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  • Writer's pictureAnja

After the holiday is before the holiday

And bang, the holiday is over again. Why is it that holidays are always over faster than the same number of working days?

What have we been up to the last few days?

Many have already seen it, but here it is again in super-duper luxury quality. Our ski video:

So we went skiing and then spent the rest of the time on the computer editing the video... ?

No, not quite. In between we were out and about again, including getting stuck in the snow, once again. But everything in order:

Beidahu Ski Resort (Google)

Our trip to the Beidahu ski resort near Jilin, about 2 hours away, was really nice. We had waited especially for great sunny weather. So we got up early in the morning, had a few sandwiches and off we went. Two hours overland and always towards the sun. On the way, we were horrified to discover that we had forgotten our sandwiches! A short gasp, we found some muesli bars in the car and calmed down again. The Beidahu Resort corresponds more or less to our European ideas of ski resorts. Gondola lifts, chair lifts and at least 10 slopes. The map really does show almost all of them as blue slopes, but we feel that only a few deserve the designation blue - suitable for beginners. They were all quite steep. Despite the sunshine, it was -15 degrees. Down in the sun and in the wind shadow really well bearable, up on the summit frosty and with wind. Actually, we wanted to launch the drone from above, but it was much too cold for that, and the batteries froze and wouldn't work.

Our friend (red jacket) was hit on the last descent and collided with someone. Actually, he wanted to stay one more day (he had rented a small room nearby), but then he went back to Changchun with us in the evening. He had to rest for two days. In the meantime, he is well again and teaches biology at the American International School. He is a teacher.

Boluo Lake (Google)

Since there is not so much snow here that you can snowkite on the fields, the kiters here always go to lakes. We already told you about that. On the Taipingchi Reservoir we got stuck again. An ice floe-snow drift-looked pretty funny-ditch stretched across the entire lake. Denny wanted to get across with momentum and bang, we were stuck in this snowdrift, not between the ice floes... But at least within sight of the Chinese kiters. And they came to help right away. We were pulled out by the kiter we had freed a few weeks ago. One hand washes the other (but Denny wasn't quick enough, he had already unpacked the 18er and wanted to pull us out with the help of kite power if the Chinese kiter hadn't been quick enough with his pickup (-: )

Those were the highlights of our 1.5 week holiday, otherwise we made eggnog, went out to eat, ordered sushi, went for a walk, slept in, hung out at home, cooked together and booked a trip to Hainan for Anja.

Hainan (Google)

is a Chinese island in the far south. It's about 25-30 degrees at the moment. Anja goes ahead to see where it's nice and where it's worth staying a few days longer.

Anja will fly to Hainan on Thursday with a friend for 8 days. The plan is to explore the east of the island. Which hotels are good, where is the best wind and smooth water. The flights are booked, the hotels too, now they just need a rental car. Actually, that shouldn't be a big deal, we know it from Germany.

But we are in China! On the international website of there is no option to book a rental car. The Chinese version still offered this at the weekend, but we failed because of the Chinese ID card. By the way, the name also had to be entered in Chinese characters, but the translator helps.

Second attempt then on Tuesday with Anja's Chinese teacher Hejheij. Problem No. 1: we are foreigners - so the car costs more than for Chinese.

Problem No. 2: we don't speak Chinese - so some of the car rental companies don't want to give us a car.

Problem No. 3: Anja's driving licence is only 1 month old - the date of the German driving licence does not count.

Problem No. 4: the passport - is not accepted by many rental companies.

So there are only a few providers left.

We are privileged as white Germans - we really only know racism and discrimination from hearsay. Such treatment of people of other origins is unbelievable. But Denny had already told Anja in advance that the Chinese are racists. (Trump comes right behind with his "America first").

Did you actually know that Anja quit a job at a car rental company in 2012 because the boss there did exactly the same things? Anja certainly doesn't get on with it. We think everyone is equal and deserves respect, no matter what country they come from.

When Chinese people visit Germany, they have no problem renting a car. Here in China, however, it is made really difficult for foreigners.

Rubbish in China

What we also wanted to tell you:

There are many opinions on whether you should separate waste, how you should separate it, what should be recycled and how, and where all the waste that is floating in the sea, for example, comes from. Also that, for example, the rich western countries ship their rubbish to the poor countries and hand it over there. Whether this is true or not is not the issue here. What we have noticed, however, is how the Chinese deal with their rubbish. So, directly from our front door into our blog into your heads:

There is no separation here. Neither bottles nor cans nor cardboard. There are, even here in the compound, waste collectors who pull the cardboard out of the bins to collect it and earn some extra money. Like our deposit collectors. The bins in front of the door are those that a family house puts in front of the door. So these black ones. Everything goes in there. Recyclable waste, glass, cardboard, food scraps.... Later in the day, the "rubbish truck" comes. It's a tuktuk with a loading area. The rubbish man shovels the contents in and drives off. The loading area is open. So half of it is blown away by the wind. We always put our cardboard in a box next to the rubbish so that the cardboard collectors don't have to do any extra digging.

In our compound, however, there is no rubbish lying around; there are staff here who collect the rubbish that has been blown off the lawn.

In Shanghai there is supposed to be waste separation, but we don't know if that's true. In Changchun and the surrounding area, there are rubbish bins labelled Non-Recycle and Recycle, but both bins are emptied into the same bag.

And overall, the city is already clean. It's definitely cleaner than in Berlin or somewhere like that. Outside the city it looks different. The rubbish is not collected there.

If you want to reduce your plastic bag consumption, for example, when you go shopping, you are told by the weighing staff that you cannot sell fruit or vegetables without a plastic bag. Even the bag you bring yourself does not help. Sometimes it is possible to arrange that each piece of fruit gets a price tag.

An friend of mine was even laughed at in the shop when she pointed out with translators that plastic bags are not good for the environment...

According to this, a lot of rubbish is produced here: Sweet corn is double-wrapped, strawberries are individually wrapped in muffin paper, bauze (stuffed noodles similar to tortellini, but not as tasty) are not wrapped in a bag but in a tray, and toilet paper rolls are individually wrapped as well as kitchen rolls....

Wedding planning

Yesterday we heard from our hotel that we will now have our wedding party in September. We really hope that the situation will relax by then and that it will be similar to last year.

Having to wait so long and constantly postpone is really annoying.

Many greetings from us in China

Anja & Denny

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