21: China > Xiamen > Jinjiang

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After a hiatus of 2 months, I’m on the road again, this time travelling to the city of Xiamen in China, and what do we have here at KUL? The classic Boeing 747-200, belonging to Iran Air.
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Registration EP-IAH, her maiden flight was in Dec, 1976. More than 30 years in the air already, this grand lady!img_8653.JPG

This is my transport to XMN, reg. B-5215, Xiamen Airlines Boeing 737-700, flight MF858. Next to it is a sister ship, another 737-700 bound for Fuzhou, the capital of Fujian province.img_8662.JPG

Some 3,000km away, and 5 hours later, here I am at the honeycomb-y XMN terminal.img_8791.JPG

And where exactly Xiamen is? It’s a coastal island city of 2mil people, in the province of Fujian, which faces Taiwan.kl-xiamen.png

We are putting up at this posh hotel with a fetish for glass – the stuff is everywhere.
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A tea-house in the lobby …

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… which can drive any tea-lovers crazy.img_8694.JPG

In the well-appointed room, glass everywhere …img_8809.JPG

… at every corner, and …

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… especially in the bathroom. Sure, nice to look at, but in my humble opinion, not so practical. Could be dangerous when you bang into them. Look at that sink-y bowl!img_9067.JPG

But the view out the window is fantastic, especially as the sun sets over mainland China. Yes, Xiamen is on a coastal island.

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The lounge at the top of the hotel is very cosy …img_9033.JPG

… where drinks are served in optical-illusioned glasses …img_8691.JPG

… with a splendid view of downtown Xiamen to boot.
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Truly a booming 21st century city.
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The next morning we decide to wander around. Spanking new elevated highways.img_8666.JPG

Very clean-looking too. Do they wash this thing at night?

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We spot a park, and stroll towards it.img_8669.JPG

Facing China mainland, Xiamen is on the western edge of an island in the Taiwan Straits.
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That’s the mainland on the other side. 200km behind us is Taiwan.img_8675.JPG

Being a Saturday, families (typically, Family = Mom + Dad + The Single Kid) throng the park. These 3 boys are from 3 families.

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As KC looks on, sharing a bike is not easy. img_8682.JPG

Noon and we are on the road to the industrial city of Jinjiang, well-known for its factories churning out apparels, fabrics, footwear and building materials, the stuff China is famous for.img_8776.JPG

A modern toll expressway connects Xiamen and Jinjiang, and the 80km journey to the northeast is done in quick time.img_8782.JPG

I’m told this expressway goes all the way to Shanghai, some 1000km away.img_8783.JPG

Lobby of our hotel in Jinjiang. The Chinese seem to like this sorta theme, but it hurts my eyes.img_8702.JPG

Curvy corridor to the rooms, and nice doors too.img_8775.JPG

Nice room, looks comfy … but let’s check out the bathroom …img_8739.JPG

Uh-huh? Slit-defending? Now, whose slit needs defending from whom? surprise img_8735.JPG

Ahhhh … you mean slip-resistant not slit-defending. Direct translation plus a bit of strategic typo can change the context totally, right?d'oh

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Wa-hey, there’s even an internet-connected PC in the room, that’s cool, though it’s crippled with malware. I boot it up and find my family gallery in Chinese! I have no clue how to switch it to the English version.I don't know - New!
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Anyway Jinjiang looks pleasant and prosperous, thanks to the booming economy.img_8741.JPG

Shady avenues make strolling in the the hot and humid summer day more bearable.
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Otherwise you can stop at the many roadside stalls to cool yourself with some fresh fruits.
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Or maybe get a packed duck, ready to go. Poor bugger. img_8745.JPG

Downtown Jinjiang and the imposing city hospital dominates.img_8749.JPG

Risking my life to get this middle-of-the-road shot of a roundabout. img_8756.JPG

Same roundabout from my hotel room, which shows what a well-groomed place Jinjiang is.

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And of course, it’s not enough. Hacking the hills for more factories I guess.img_8766.JPG

Later in the day, we find ourselves on the way back to Xiamen.img_8784.JPG

Re-entering Xiamen Island.

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And despite the cool-looking car navigation system with GPS, our driver manages to get lost! img_8793.JPG

But all is not lost, we soon find our bearing and head for our hotel in downtown Xiamen.img_8798.JPG

> To be continued

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