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The green in Xi’an

July 3, 2012

The pedestrian walkways around the office and apartment are full of shrubs, flowers, and trees. Taking a walk was refreshing, day or night. Well, daytime walk is both refreshing and dusty, as the air is generally dusty and cars are driving by.

  

Sunny morning with a big huge sun like that is quite rare in Xi’an. I totally loved that day and every time the sun heat scorched, I dare not complain. Sunshine is important to my emotional and physical health :p. And look at the quiet beautiful walkways! Don’t think I’d ever not enjoy walking along that.

Pete  Flower
Look what I found while walking! How to say “pete” in English? Not sure. The flowers were pretty. See more in my picasa album.

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An easy 20-minute bus ride takes me to a big park right downtown. Parks in Xi’an are designed not just for greenery, but also for recreational activities. Seeing someone sat by a rock and read a book, I followed suit, but instead of sitting by a rock, I sat on one. Wanted to be taller and to have a good view of my surroundings, I thought. I read, watched the people passing by, waited for the sun to set.

  

After a while, a boy passed by with his mom. He found climbing the little rock a challenge. Next, a girl passed by and did the same. Then a pair of friends 小朋友 came over with their moms. I was really amused by them. She eventually kicked me out of my rock. “阿姨,你坐在那边吧,” she told me while climbing the rock I was on. “好的,” I agreed happily. In a way, I was waiting to hear her say that. It’s nice to be bothered by little kids :p. I watched them play for a long time. They didn’t stop enjoying themselves climbing the several rocks over and over. The girl was more brave and faster than the boy. “从这儿更容易!” she said to the boy every time she managed to be up there first. I loved watching them, 真好朋友。Their friendship and joy passed on to me :).

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A 30-minute drive takes me to the mountain, and more depending on how far up I go. I didn’t get many chances to go to the mountain, so I really enjoyed every time I went. The view was just beautiful and the sounds so peaceful. I especially like the forest; being low among the mountain and the giant trees made me feel in awe. Looking up the sky reminded me of God.

Standing on the edge of the Grand Canyon and contemplating your own greatness is pathological. At such moments we are made for a magnificent joy that comes from outside ourselves. And each of these rare and precious moments in life—beside the Canyon, before the Alps, under the stars—is an echo of a far greater excellence, namely, the glory of God. That is why the Bible says, “The heavens declare the glory of God, and the sky above proclaims his handiwork” (Psalm 19:1).   ~John Piper, in Don’t Waste Your Life

I think I can sit there and read or chat for a long time, given a good place to sit. I also like the food at the villages all around there. There are so many kinds of veggie dishes, and the fried eggs (炒鸡蛋) is really yummy.

  
Kids, can always play with anything in any form. Even though there were many people around them, they are not embarrassed. I sometimes act like kids, but the people around me, like my sister, is usually embarrassed 😀


We hiked this CuiHua mountain. It was an easy hike, and halfway up there were rock caves and a lake.


A view from Qingling mountain. The hike here was rough. I’d blame it on my shoes :p The sweat and the view made up for it.

I now love my time in Xi’an. Can say it is better than Beijing. I will definitely miss the parks and (relative) quietness in Xi’an. I think I’ll come back for a visit 🙂

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