This report was written in Beihai in July 2007 – but unfortunately got left on the computer there! As we were back in October, I managed to copy it onto a portable hard-drive, and so here it is, better late than never! Enjoy! We spent the first half of the Summer 2007 break back at home in Beihai, an opportunity to update a few things around the house, and explore the area further. Changes to the house included adding extractor fans and heat lights to bathrooms, adding net curtains, putting up a few pictures, and buying a new bed and 'office' furniture. The pictures below show some of the 'afters'.
We also decided to do something for Shanhong's parents. They have also bought a house in Beihai, but an older house ... we decided to update the kitchen. The before, during and after follows! I have no wish to upset my own mother who has wanted a new kitchen for years - but this whole thing cost just £170 !
Apart from the above, it has been a restful time! I completed two modules of my course, and watched every episode of Cadfael ever shown. I've also read three books and completed a new computer game. We were sent some DVDs and also found a DVD shop - very cheap (although quality varies). Shanhong bought a DVD which had over six hours of a Chinese soap opera - so she has been happy too! We've been to our local beach often, both with miles of sand when the sea was out, and watched the waves crashing over the wall when the tide was in and a tornado passing. It really is fantastic to have the ocean so close! We've been to see the 'famous?' fountains - and enjoyed the show - watching from the beach as 'important people' were exclusively using the proper seats. We will have to go back with a video camera to get some photos, the one in the middle below was the only one I could find on the net! The other photos were daytime with the fountain not in use.
We made a few little trips, one was to the nearby island of Weizhou. A 50 minute journey by fast catamaran took us directly from Beihai (5 minutes from the house on the bike) to the landing pier of Weizhou. Quickly selecting a motorbike 'taxi' to take us to all the places of interest, we were off! The sun was hot, the scenery good... and then the heavens opened... we were soaked - thoroughly drenched... never mind! One more surprise... our 'taxi driver' insisted on giving us a gift - a whole hand of bananas! Photos are all ours.
Another day saw us taking the free supermarket bus out to the old town of HePu. Here we thought be clever and hired another motorbike taxi to take us to all the famous places.... she didn't know any - and there is certainly no tourist set up - most turned out to be inside school grounds or other private places. We still took lots of photos. Perhaps the simplest trip, with the nicest photo - was a ride on our own bike, up the coast to the National Park - just 30 minutes cycle and lovely views of the coast and city.
So, there you have it, our latest visit - we'll be back at Christmas to finish off! A 'video' of the fountains and of the house will added to the website soon! Keep in touch.
Love to all, Trevor & Shanhong xx