Friday, November 30, 2007

Boon's China/Tibet Odyssey (16th May - 28th June 05)

**2.5 years after the trip: I am so happy that I spent all my savings back then for this trip. As i know that even if I die now, I am happy to know that i have seen parts of this beautiful world (esp Tibet) and met great people along the way. I know that i can re-experience my journey while reading this blog. **
From Beijing & Tianjing -> Shanghai & Suzhou -> Lanzhou (Gansu) -> Xiahe (Gansu) -> Langmusi (Gansu) -> Chengdu (Sichuan) ->Lhasa (Tibet) -> Shigatse, Gyantse & Yamdrok-Tso (Tibet) -> Bayi, Pomi, Pamda (Eastern Tibet) -> Deqin, Zhongdian, Lijang (Yunnan) -> Kunming (Yunnan) -> Chengdu (Sichuan)

Beijing & TianJing

The first leg of the Odyssey is participating the 2nd Sino-Singapore Undergraduate Exchange Program, and the first stop is the Capital of China - Beijing.

(Peking University)

Feeling...g Poetic..???!???!! - (Peking University)

Really Cool Hangout place @ Hou-Hai

A premier Primary Boarding School...... and fully-functional Studio room. - (Beijing)

Part of a syndicate... don't be fooled like me! - (Street of Beijing)

Flying Dragon - (Tiananmen Square)

Always a joy to walk in Tiananmen Square in the night!

Chinese Version of KFC & 7-Eleven - (Street of Beijing)

Window of ....

Second time visiting the Forbidden City, and the HUGE number of tourist never fail to spoil my viewing pleasure.

Away from the main crowd to soak-up the atmosphere - (Forbidden City)

Transitional Period? New vs Old? Struggling? Mirroring the whole China??? - (Forbidden City)

Cables... - (Beijing Hu-Tong)

What is better than exploring Beijing in Bike with a group of friends? - (Soong Qing Ling Residence, Beijing)

What is better than Savouring Xiao-Fei-Yang Steamboat with a group of friends & playing with Doreamon at the same time?
(Li Tao is going to kill me!!)

Visiting "Rural" Outskirt of Beijing. Treated with a spread of Local Delicacy, and feeling really comfortable!!!

My only photo of Great Wall of China without any tourist!..... Ok... well, you can see the silhouette of people in the shelter

Strike a pose! Vogue... - ("Rural" Village, Outskirt of Beijing)

Superb Beijing Opera!!! Farewell My Concubine - Ba Wang Bie Ji.

One Night in Beijing! Last Nite in Beijing! Wreaking Havoc in my room! - (Hotel Room, Beijing)

Bicycle Sea!! - (Nankai University, Tianjing)

Shanghai & Suzhou

Shanghai is the Financial Hub of the rising Dragon... perhaps, the soon-to-be the New York of the East.

What can be more iconic than the "Dong Fang Ming Chu" - Pearl of the East? - (Pudong, Shanghai)

First, there were 5 people. Then, there were 10 people! - (Pudong, Shanghai)

Financial District - (Pudong, Shanghai)

Colonial Architecture - (The Bund, Shanghai)

The Nite Scenery of Pudong & the Bund. Somehow, Shanghai always reminds me of Hong Kong.

Impressive Buildings of Shanghai International Studies University (SISU), which is located in the Shanghai University Town.

The only picture about Suzhou that is worth showing....

Xiahe (Gansu)

Located in the Tibetan Plateau at an elevation of 3000m, it is home to one of the six major Tibetan Yellow hat monastery - Labrang Monastery. There is no direct train or flight to Xiahe, so I gotta take a 24 hour long train from Shanghai to Lanzhou, and the next morning, I took a 6 hours bus ride to Xiahe.

On the train from Shanghai to Lanzhou

Great Folks I met in the train. (From Beijing, Lanzhou, Singapore & Zhejiang respectively)... Ok, I know I looked kinda weird!!

Anyway, I have learnt a great deal from these people especially Mr Zhu, the guy on the far right, from Yiwu, Zhejiang Province. Even though he is not highly educated, this businessman possessed a wealth of management knowledge which he gained from his years of experience. He is indeed a true-bloom entrepreneur/businessman who is hardworking, smart, able to withstand stress and hardship, and most importantly, having an inquisitive mind. In fact, I am quite impressed by him. Now, I understand why some of the richest man in the world do not have a degree, as there are lotsa knowledge that are not found in books, and you need an inquisitive mind to distil knowledge from your experiences. He is a classic example of a great "distiller".

Lanzhou City's Evening...

Scenery along the way from Lanzhou to Xiahe....

New Friends who I met in the bus station, and I decided to follow them to stay one night in the Tibetan house in Sangke Grassland . - (Xiahe)

Tibetan Host, who was preparing "Chang-Ba" - Tibetan Staple food (made up of Wheat, Sugar, Barley). On the table, he also served us some yak butter tea and some dough. - (Grassland, Xiahe)

Tibetan Mud House and the grassland...

Horse-riding time!!! Felt a bit like the scene in "Crouching Tiger Hidden Dragon" - (Grassland, Xiahe)

Tibetan Lady Looking at the Vast land - (Grassland, Xiahe)

Sunset time.... and the Tibetan dogs have thick fur to keep them warm in the freezing nite. - (Grassland, Xiahe)

Two cute and innocent Tibetan girls - (Grassland, Xiahe)

Childhood should be this way.... full of laughter and fun!

Tibetan Lady waiting patiently for her bucket to be filled up. - (Grassland, Xiahe)

Tibetan Prayer Wheels - (Labrang Monastry, Xiahe)

Pilgrim - (Labrang, Xiahe)
I saw him again 3 hours later. Still prostrating. We just smiled at each other.

Labrang Monastery


Pilgrims from the region. - (Labrang, Xiahe)

Old Tibetan Lady - (Labrang, Xiahe)

Cute Tibetan Boy with Panchen-Lama Pendant - (Labrang, Xiahe)

More Kids!!! =) - (Labrang, Xiahe)