Friday, September 19, 2008

Blue Sky, Gray Sky

Speaking of the Summer Palace, here are two pictures of Longevity Hill that were snapped from our balcony on two different days.

For those of you who are curious, we have had plenty of bright, blue sky days. Way more than one would expect, given all the attention paid to the air pollution issue in the run up to the Olympic Games. Over the course of a month, the weather has been way more good than bad. Every time heavy, gray air has settled in, a big storm has quickly materialized, with pleasant air close on its heels.

Just when we were beginning to scoff at the nay-saying Western media, we met a life-long Beijing resident, who had some sobering predictions for us. First off, she congratulated us for arriving in Beijing during the Olympic period. "We haven't seen such blue skies in years." These were pretty much her exact words. And then the prediction. With the end of even-odd license plate days, the gray skies can't be far behind. Sounds like our fun in the sun is coming to an end...

~Steve

PS: A funny little sidebar. This driver who was taking us around town locked our backpacks in the trunk of the car (this was so they weren't on our laps...it was a small car). When we arrived at our destination, he couldn't get them out. He had no idea how the lock worked. Turns out this was because the car he was driving wasn't his. He had borrowed someone else's, so he could stay on the road. You see, it was an odd day, and his car has an even license plate.

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