Date registered: October 19, 2010
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Hi.... 1.1m in the city proper; not that small really...one can buy coffee, beans and cheese of course and there are 3 Macs, 6 KFCs and 3 Pizza Huts. There is a genuine Hagen Dazs and several Dairy Queens. Franchised doughnut and cheesecake outlets too. Plus German, several smart Thai places, a French place and many Korean, Japanese and Brazilian grills. At least 20 restaurants serve pizza. 600 places to drink including over 100 bars and German and Belgian Beers in at least 30 of them. One micro-brewery bar has opened with a German theme. There is a Korean bar and 2 pubs selling draught beers; one seats 300 and has 18 kitchen staff and bbq. There are 10 clubs including Soho. A huge Wanda Plaza with Imax plus other new malls and several coffee houses aka Starbucks ( which is coming). 5000 places to eat in fact. The best hotels have enormous buffets which would satisfy any cravings for western foods. One, 3 story Walmart and 2 smaller ones. Carrefore is coming. Most foods can be bought on Taobao anyway.
There are several wonderful parks which are huge. There is the lake with it's wooded islands on the outskirts which has water skiing and boats to hire, cycle tracks and lakeside restaurants. Fule Mountain Park in the city is very romantic with glades of bamboo and the high temple with views over the whole city. Restaurants and tea-houses sit in lovely gardens with pools of koi. And another park with the dozens of temples and lakes is near the railway station. The main temple is glazed with blue tiles. Lao Long San has some 50 pretty restaurants nestled amongst 10.000 (!) peach trees and is the most beautiful place when in blossom. I can walk there from my home.
Yes, 6 universities with over 100,000 students; Mianyang has the highest percent of educated people in ALL China, some 25% have a degree. 140,000 are engineers or scientists and MY has the highest per capita income of any city in West China including Chengdu, Xian and Chongching. It is easy to see the wealth. Yes, it is very safe and clean; one can swim in the rivers.
There used to be 1500 foreigners dwelling in Mianyang. It depends on how one defines foreigner. Many engineers from other lands pass through.
Mianyang cannot compare with Chengdu. It is like saying Manchester is not London.
Putting smokers up against a wall would deter the few. But it's like caravanners and cat owners, there are so many of them none can legislate against them. The caravan owners toddle down the roads with a mile ( 1.6km) of hot and angry drivers behind them. Not oblivious but all smugness and power-crazy to their plight. "Ban caravans in the daytime ! Get them off OUR roads !"screech the tabloids. " Don't vote for the Liberals" scream the Caravanners Owners Organisation ( with an S). 250,000 members close ranks, wheel their wagons in a circle, bunker down and prepare to defend their God-given rights to annoy.
The 10,000,000 cats who eat all the birds, defficate on ex-pristine lawns, tear up garden furniture in neighbour's ( with a U) have millions of caring and thoughtful ( read selfish and relapsed) owners. "Neuter and net the moggies !" cry the dog owners ( sorry, genuine patriots). " Castrate the dog owners !" bellow the National Association of Cat Lovers to outer space.
70 million Chinese smokers won't be doused with rules. You can gaol ( with a G,O,A,L) 25 million of us but you can't take away all our freedom ( to kill others with our fumes)".
So 3 down and 69,000997 to go.
PS. Why when all of Europe and 54 Commonwealth countries and most of Africa and the rest of the civilised (yes, with an S of course) world uses British, Oxford spelling does my stupid computer keep telling me to use American? Bonkers. It's like the word soccer; who else uses it...except for Chinese, Chinglish speakers.
But to answer the question. I found my 12th Lhasa beer at 2am in a Tibetan bar in Shigatse tasted really,really great. Much better than the previous 6 Carlsbergs.
He called at my place and delicately took out a package and with some reverence placed it on my bar. He looked me in the eye and apparently said in Chinese: "This is a beer you can sell". My wife and I were a little bemused with his offering for it was obviously a bottle but with a brown, paper cover, twisted at the top. It had one obvious word in English; Tsingtao Beer. It had a number like bank notes do. He certainly acted impressed for he continued: " You can have the exclusive contract in your city". Triumphant is the word.He looked triumphant as he stood there in his Chinese blue suit with a laurel halo glinting. Being a kind person I gave him my time and asked the right sort of interested questions. "Why does it sell for 80rmb a bottle". That sort of pertinent inquiry, you know. I conjured in my mind my wealthy customers each trying one, single, paper-bagged bottle of semi-Germanic beer just for the experience; but only one; ever. He was so disappointed when I made my ( lame) excuse but one which is a rule of mine. No Chinese beers in my pub. Off he trotted to find a more deluded and gullible owner than I. I have this feeling he is still wandering like a zombie in a blue, Chinese suit,clutching his wares.
The rule is 5 years in ONE province. After 5 years, say in Sichuan, you must leave and stay elsewhere. After one year you may return to Sichuan.
Several in my city had to leave and all are still in China. 2 plan to return to Sichuan.
Trial.... first they put 2, very, tall policemen on either side of you whilst standing in front of the judge. Be forewarned; do not say the witnesses are mad or bad. As you are already guilty admit to everything. Being bi-polar is not an acceptable excuse. If deemed deranged you will be confined to a padded cell in Outer Mongolia along with 40 other miscreants and allowed one box of wax crayons and a ouija board. No makeup or deodorant to sniff. One way to pass the years quickly is to read out loud the millions of digits of Pi after the decimal point.
Study online with: http://www.london.ac.uk/distance_learning.html
Come out with a genuine degree ! No not photocopy it for sale. If incarcerated for enough time you can even do a Masters Degree. Best choose Philosophy to give some idea of the purpose of life.
I trust this will be of use in your decision making.
Best regards, WiseD, the Devil's Advocate.
Just go to the PSB Foreign Affairs Office in a city and ask to renew for 30 days. You ought to be able to extend at least once. Twice is common for a total of 3 months. Just say you want to travel a bit longer around China. I know many who have done this and none were asked to show money. Presumably your friend has a ticket for leaving China to another destination. But do not overstay the visa.
Methinks you are joking as commonsense suggests the answer is it would be definitely illegal. One might question your motives. Certainly the PSB would find it hard to believe it was for fun.
If you were to use a genuine University then that would infringe on their ownership of logo and reputation and much else.
Already there are people faking degrees and many using them to find jobs. I know several who do so. Photoshop makes it rather simple.
The law says that anyone faking degrees or using them faces jail, large fine, deportation and banned from returning to China for ten years.
Next you might consider forging the 100rmb note with a disclaimer.
Some years ago this question was asked in a newspaper in the UK and many thousands made their suggestions. It made interesting reading and used much common sense. I doubt the list has changed much although times have changed as have fashions and desires.
Here are some of my thoughts on the subject using memories from those words in past times.
Let's call them pubs for the moment as to me a bar is the actual drinks area within a drinking place.
Most pubs are personalised by the owner cum landlord. It is usually he or she or a couple who decide the decor or theme. Of course if it is an old world place then original features will be mixed with other trivia and knic-knacs.
An important consideration is the actual people who run a pub and who are on show. Landlords were known as 'mine host' and for a good reason. If one has a dour and taciturn bloke or a crabby lady dishing out the drinks and food then the atmosphere will get fogged. With so much choice as to where to spend one's earned pennies and pounds most choose who they want to hand over the cash to. 'Does he/she deserve my money ?' is a good question. Originally the landlords were the first on the list of reasons. Think about your favourite pub and who runs it?
The position of the pub is important. Is it local? Is it hard to find? Is it in a safe area? In a big city then local pubs get local customers. Every university or college has popular pubs nearby.
The decor is another guide. Some like those trendy places as in the London Docks or Manhattan. Some yearn for beams and comfy old chairs. Others go for themed places with staff dressed as pirates or Red Guards. Some with a nautical theme. Some go along Irish or Ozzie lines and some even try German or French.
Cleanliness ! Ashtrays and tissues removed and toilets washed often. No bad smells or sticky seats. No people putting bare sweaty feet on sofas either. Doesn't really matter if the furniture is worn or even a trifle threadbare so long as it all looks... clean. After all a 400yo pub is unlikely to look pristine.
Will I meet friends there? This is important, especially in China where the locals don't usually talk with strangers. I am from a 2000yo village with 300 people and the pub is from 1216. I virtually knew everyone but if I went to Manchester or wherever there was often someone to pass the time with. Will my friends be happy to meet up in such and such a pub?
Safety is another thing to ponder. Pubs with cheap beer and mainly younger clients might be more likely to have the odd fracas? Remove the word might probably. Would you take your date there; or mother?
Drinks choice might be another factor. If only Coorls Light was on offer then would that be a plus? Can they make good cocktails might be a question by some afficiados. Yes, a decent choice is a plus.
Price comes at the bottom of most lists. There is not much point in selling 8rmb Carlsbergs in a shabby and smelly dump in a ghetto area. One has a choice of where to go. If one were to find the perfect pub with the decent landlord and lovely decor. If it is near home and full of friends. If it were comfortable but not too cosy that everyone fell asleep. Then the price of the drinks would not matter so much. One would expect to pay more in a Bond Street pub than at a Railway Station Arms. If the beers had arrived in Shanghai in barrels from Germany and were then trained 2000kms to SW China this might affect the price. If the place actually turns on the heating in winter and has obviously spent a fortune on making the pub welcoming then of course the drinks will be higher. Everyone was given a choice. Inflation is not helping here in China either. One could sit at home watching a pirated movie under a duvet with a warm Snow beer at hand to save money. One could forget the beer and save even more.
But at the end of the day a pub is a business and a haven for some. Success is how many choose to enter and sit or stand and order drinks. In fact if it were so bad no-one would bother. Another is just how long the place has been opened and survived.
I ask for other reasons why one favours one place to another.... WD