Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Black & White China

Here's a collection of the black & white photos I took in China.  Most of them are from my trip to Hangzhou, which is famous for its lake and surrounding woods.  It's a few hours from Shanghai and I took the train there by myself.    It was crazy getting there and back.  Imagine the chaos of Penn Station except all the signs are in Chinese.  I would stare at the characters of the alphabet on my ticket and then check the board until I found a match.  It worked!

The West Lake at Hangzhou is beautiful and when I went it was raining.  Fog covered everything, adding a hint of mystery to my experience.  I then took a taxi up the mountain to Lingyin Temple, which is surrounded by beautiful grottos and religious rock carvings of the Buddha and his followers.  I meditated in a nice spot by a stream and when I opened my eyes I was surrounded by Chinese tourists taking pictures of the meditating westerner.
It was also in Hangzhou where I got a taste of what it's really like to live under the thumb of the Chinese government.  After dinner I came back to my room to check my facebook account.  Blocked!  Hmmmm....let me check what's on youtube.  Blocked again!!!  I learned that, although you can access them just fine in Beijing and Shanghai, they're banned everywhere else.  So I just turned on the tv and watched The Green Hornet (there wasn't any nightlife in Hangzhou).

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