A couple of days ago I came down to this beautiful city for the first time to have a look around, meet my site designer (a great designer and a great host) and maybe get a glimpse of the eclipse tomorrow morning, though weather reports and the current rainstorm don’t bode well for that. The eclipse was last on my list, but I can imagine the swarms of people that checked into my hotel this afternoon (which was empty yesterday) will be very disappointed if the forecasts hold true. What can you do?
I leave China next week. I came here seeking to unwind, and somewhat ironically and wholly unexpectedly as soon as i arrived I got an offer for a freelance assignment that’s kept me in the room all day today. Which wasn’t such an unwelcome thing, since the day before I nearly melted down in Suzhou’s famous summer heat climbing the hills on Dongshan Dao. The new work practically guarantees I’ll be busy until my flight takes off for America in a few days, and for the next two weeks after that. So more silence to follow.
Below is a picture my friend Ben took yesterday from the top of Suzhou’s San Shan Dao. It really is a dreamlike place that, like Kunming and Qingdao, has a distinctive look and feel that makes you wonder for a moment whether you’re still in China.
(And sorry about the photo screwing up the alignment – working on it, but my connection now is too slow to re-upload and align. It may have to stay that way for a day or two.)
Richard Burger is the author of Behind the Red Door: Sex in China, an exploration of China's sexual revolution and its clash with traditional Chinese values.