Thursday, 28 February 2008

Spring is in the air

I managed to slip out of the office yesterday for a very quick lunch and on the way I finally got to walk past the recently opened Beijing Opera House or officially titled National Centre for Performing Arts. It's surrounded by a moat like affair, giving the arts a sense of protection for which Beijing's reputation kicks Shanghai's dollar loving ass over. So forgive me if I slip a couple of pics from the Nokia N95 in because I've dropped this baby a couple of times now and it's miraculously past the flying battery and spinning battery-cover test which is always received with gratitude when it survives that particular tumble, and is indeed the first quality about Nokia that really turned me on to the brand. That and the banana shaped ones that we first got at HHCL which were iconic and still are in a retro way. But really, Its not meant to survive this kind of abuse so its like a second life for me which is worth a few hundred euros in reality.

But what I wanted to say is that even though I cannot bear the cold, I moved to Beijing knowing that I need to sacrifice some things to achieve others. However, even though there will be cold days ahead, spring has definitely sprung and there is a whiff of fast paced tarting up going on in Beijing in the last days before the entire planet thinks more about China than it has ever done in the history of this incredible country destined for a legacy that is even larger than its geographical size or population, because that is exactly how the numbers game works. Here are the flowers being planted in time for the arrival of the sun.

And many of the boulevards are going through intense tree planting each morning with entire sections of previously tundra like frozen mud now being dug up and prepped for beauty. China knows how to throw a few hundred thousand workers at a project. Like no other.

This is no time to go into the whole construction boom thing versus planning a city for 2050 but I will do at some point. There's something interesting going on here and I haven't quite found the words to embrace all of it.

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