When I lived in Beijing, one of my favorite things to do was go to take visitors to the Great Wall in the mountains outside of the city. There are a few designated Great Wall tourist sites, but I also enjoyed exploring some of the unrestored and undeveloped sites as well.
But I never did what Great Wall historian William Lindesay did, namely hike the length of it. To celebrate 30 years of working in China, he and his family spent a year hiking from the easternmost part of the wall at Shanhaiguan to the western terminus at Jiayuguan.
As reported by the BBC:
British geographer, conservationist and author William Lindesay has had a lifelong obsession with the Great Wall of China. Three decades ago, he left his home on Merseyside to live near the wall so he might better be able to study it. In 2016 he and his family travelled 15,000km (9,320 miles) around the wall network, filming it from the air with a drone. Mr Lindesay and his sons, Jim and Thomas, spoke to the BBC about their epic journey and how they shot it.
A video clip of some of the best shots can be found here. (email readers, please click on the link to see the video.) These are shots and perspectives not seen before and they are amazing.
You can read a more detailed account of the journey here.
Another video that makes me homesick for China….
The Great Wall — Fact or Fantasy?
Wham! Bam! The Great Wall!
A Miniature Great Wall
A Great Wall Graduation
No Great Wall from Space
Friday Photo: The Wall in Spring
Where Did the Wall Go?
Port-a-potties at the Wall
A Tale of Two Hikes
Slogans are an integral part of political life in China, with the Communist Party using them to impart to the masses their latest thinking (hence the ‘correct’ thinking’ on a wide variety of issues. Each new political campaign or government initiative requires it’s own slogan.
The BBC recently published a list of 11 slogans that marked significant changes in policy or direction in China. Here’s the abbreviated list, but click the link to read the story and significance of each:
1. Let a Hundred Flowers Bloom! (1958)
2. Dare to think, dare to act! (1958)
3. Smash the four olds! (1966)
4. Smash the gang of four! (1976)
5. Reform and opening up (1978)
6. Seek truth from facts! (1978)
7. Have fewer children, raise more pigs! (1979)
8. Three represents (2000)
9. Harmonious society (2005)
10. Three supremes! (2007)
11. Chinese Dream (2013)
Image source: Online News United Kingdom
After yesterday’s post about the China History Podcast, I decided to do some more posts about Chinese history this week.
Unless you’re a Chinese or World War II history buff, you may not know that the US military had a fairly robust presence in China during the War. The famous “Flying Tigers” had bases and personnel in several cities in SW China, including Kunming and Chengdu.
This article from Business Insider features a number of photos that were taken by US servicemen in China. They provide an interesting glimpse of what the country looked like in the late 1940’s.
A description from the article:
“In 1941 before the United States entered World War II, 300 young Americans were secretly trained to combat the Japanese Air Force in China. The American Volunteer Group of the Chinese Airforce, nicknamed the Flying Tigers, was comprised of pilots drawn from the U.S. Army, Navy, and Marine Corps.
In the days after Pearl Harbor, the group went on to capture the public imagination in both China and the United States with their daring tactics and distinctive airplanes painted with shark teeth.
Members of the squadron (most prominently, William L. Dibble and H. Allen Larsen) took a huge collection of color photographs that depict the nation adopting new urban and modern modes of living along with the rural practices of the past.”
Click on the link to the article to see the rest of the photos.
I don’t know about you, but I never get tired of looking at old photos of China.