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Read and rate Travel Journal Entries for Shandong, China

May 31, 2014 - The Super Giant Water Thing at the Beach

Today, I went to the beach with my 6 year old cousin. He's very talkative and funny. You can probably already tell by the title that this is going to be about this super giant water thing. Well, it's really just a giant chain of rivers and lakes we dug out. It started with just a small pool to wash our hands in, but we dug it bigger and bigger and eventually we started digging rivers and more lakes making a big chain. People started to join in and help. We built a fancy way to put water in the lakes and also a waterfall. We made a mountain...

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Andy Zhang's Trips

May 30, 2014 - Back to Qingdao

We're finally back in Qingdao. For two days we did nothing since my mother was too busy. She finally got a chance to take my sister and I to the beach and climb a mountain. The mountain came first which surprisingly wasn't that bad. The mountain was pretty short so we were out in just over an hour. We then went to eat which was delicious. We had Xiao Long Bao which are small buns stuffed with meat, vegetables, and soup. They were the best! My mom, sis, and I are about 50 of them. Next came the beach where we made sandcastles obviously and...

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Andy Zhang's Trips

May 22, 2014 - Beach and Birthday

Today is my grandpa's birthday. He turned 90 this year. I felt a bit bad for him since he had to go to the doctors since he has a hearing problem. While my mom, grandma, and grandpa were gone, my uncle, sister, and I went to the Polar Ocean World, the Olympic Sailboat Center, and the beach. The Polar Ocean World was pretty boring since I've been there multiple times already. It had the same animals, activities, and shows. The sailboat center wasn't that great either. All we did was ride a sailboat to the middle of the Pacific Ocean and...

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Andy Zhang's Trips

May 20, 2014 - The Lake

One of the great things about my grandparents' place is the environment. It's pretty clean compared to many other places, there are lots of shops and restaurants in walking distance, and there are also many parks around and a giant lake. The lake has koi fish everywhere and we often go feed them bread or crackers. They're very colorful ranging from a bright orange to a muddy black color. Some have spots on them and others dont. They also range greatly in size, some as big as your forearm and others smaller than your pinky. Often times...

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Andy Zhang's Trips

Sep 16, 2012 - morning on Mount Tai

In the early, early morning had a lucid dream there were five layers (called meiyer, pronounced my-er, as in Oscar Mayer) surrounding the heart. The heart itself was the first layer. Lines represented how close people were; my son reached farthest into the first meiyer, and my husband the longest, from the first to the third. Closest friends were in the second meiyer, and my work, which I do love, was in the third. I'd come to the mountain to know more about my own heart, but never expected to be given a schematic. Waking from that dream...

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Sep 15, 2012 - the heart is the emperor

In Chinese medicine the heart, not the mind, governs the body. The heart embodies wisdom, and combines experience, information, and emotion in its function of decision making. In this metaphoric system the heart is the emperor, and its rule is benevolent. Tai Shan is the foremost holy mountain of China. It’s here at the summit where the first emperor declared unification. (That’s the same guy who commissioned the Great Wall, the road system, and the terracotta warriors: Qin Shi Huang.) Confucius also spent time here. Numerous sites and...

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Sep 15, 2012 - thank you, Bixia

In a hotel restaurant at the top of Mount Tai. Had trouble finding a room – it’s Saturday, and everything is full. I'd resolved to take the cable car down and find a room in Tai’an but passed one of the pre-eminent Taoist mountain temples on the way. I went in thinking I probably wouldn’t be back, and was drawn to a female figure behind an altar, Bixia maybe, goddess of growth and fertility. Everyone around me was praying for stuff (very practical people, the Chinese) so I thought, what the heck, and prayed for a room. I couldn’t find five...

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Sep 14, 2012 - Temple of Cool Rocks and Trees

Though my hotel is by the north entrance to the Dai Temple, I walked around to the south in the footsteps of the emperors who would perform rites before ascending Mount Tai. At the altar south of the temple gate a vendor talked me into buying some incense to make an offering and showed me how to do it. Why not, I thought. I bought a small bundle of stick incense, lit it, and bowed three times, praying for my family. Then I stuck it upright in the ashes of the ceremonial incense holder, which was about the size of a pony cart and festooned...

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Sep 14, 2012 - going solo

Starting this morning in the subway I’ve been repeatedly and exclusively photographed by men. I wonder if they realize I’m a middle-aged soccer mom. Here in Tai’an at the Dai Temple several followed me around taking snickity continuous photos. Maybe it’s the hair, but I’d pulled it back in a ponytail today in order to escape attention. When climbing tomorrow I’ll try sunglasses and a floppy hat. This evening I went to eat at the restaurant located at the end of a complex of buildings that together comprise the hotel. The hostess was...

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Sep 7, 2012 - Qingdao back to Shanghai

We left Xingang at 4pm and they where in a hurry to get to Qingdao this boat normally sits on 30ks at see but they had it up to 36 ks for 24 hours as they had been told that the next was navel day in the port. Qingdao is a large monden city about the size of Sydney with there tall buildings with a night time colourful light display with different colour laser lights from the top of the tall buildings made the Christchurch beacon of hope look parffeit. Unlike the other ports in China this one was right in the back of the city the city is...

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Jul 24, 2012 - Airport Interlude

Okay, so I lied. I did have something interesting happen on the plane. I got to the airport with no problems, but they would not give me my connecting flight’s boarding pass. For whatever reason, they said that I must get my luggage and then check back in. While I was not worried about the time, I thought this was odd. When I arrived at Jinan, the halfway point to Changchun in the Northeast of China, I did get my luggage and recheck in. I accidentally told the woman at the desk I was going to Chongqing….instead of Changchun. Slight slip of...

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Sep 19, 2011 - Rainy Days in Xi'an

When people think about Xi’an, they usually think about the famous Terracotta Warriors. I, on the other hand, will always think about the rain. Goda, Brandon, and I arrived in this rainy city Saturday at 4:00 pm. We had reservations at a hostel that was said to be the best in the city, and it just happened to also have one of the cheapest prices. Due to issues beyond our control we were unable to stay at this particular hostel (this part of the story is not mine to tell). So we whipped out our map and made our way to the second best hostel...

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Memoirs of Alicia

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