San Xia - Three Gorges Dam - YiChang: Hubei Province: jingZhou:This may not be significant to you the reader, but it effectively meant that I had slipped under the security police radar. All foreigners are required to 'report in' to local police stations so that the authorities can keep track of them. Hotels automatically do this for you. By not checking me in, the hotel had allowed me to 'disappear'. I did not object! From town to the 'High Dam' where the lookout above the 5 locks is located, the trip took 50 minutes, and snaked over and through several mountains. I remember that one tunnel was around 3000 metres long.
Revisiting YiChang - Three Gorges Dam Project 2006
In December of 2004 at Magic City Morning Star News in the USA, I wrote two photographic Articles on YiChang and the Three Gorges Dam in Hubei Province China. These articles can be found at: Part.1- and -Part.2 As I recently returned to YiChang, I thought I would share with you some new and different photographs, this time taken while on a bus trip to the three gorges dam.
(This particular article has also been published Magic City
The photographs in that version however, are different to the ones in this article.
After my classes ended this semester, I planned to spend a week or so catching up on some work at King's Calendar, and then wanted to go to YiChang for a little rest, before my friend Zhang Mingxing arrived from ChengDu where he is studying. It was my plan to travel with MX on his way back home to Hong Hu, for I had some things I wanted to do there.
Unfortunately many things interfered with my planned escape to YiChang, and so when MX arrived, it was decided that we would both go to YiChang, for he longed to visit his sister whose plans for the summer did not include returning to Hong Hu. So Off we went.
MingXing and tour group in the park on the other side of the three gorge dam.
The last couple of times I went to YiChang, I traveled by bus, but MX decided that it would be cheaper and more comfortable to travel by train, and I must say that I was impressed with both the journey and the trains' facilities. The first thing that hit me when I stepped off the train was the heat. As hot as Wuhan was, it could not compare to the overbearing muggy heat of YiChang, which, apart from 2 days of rain, remained with us for the 7 days we were there.
MX's sister met us at the train station, and we took a taxi down to the Yangtze Hotel on the waterfront. The journey was a little perplexing for the taxi driver, as I, the foreigner, was the only one who knew exactly where it was. I had stayed there before.
Taken from the waterfront at YiChang
Taken of the waterfront from the Yi Ling Bridge.
Checking into the hotel was a strange experience, because while I was the one who spoke to the receptionist, it was MX whose identification was used for the check in. In China, foreign tourists are only allowed to stay in designated tourist hotels, but as I have a residence permit, I am entitled to stay anywhere. I never even got the chance to point out that I was permitted to stay in the hotel. We booked in under MingXing's name.
This may not be significant to you the reader, but it effectively meant that I had slipped under the security police radar. All foreigners are required to 'report in' to local police stations so that the authorities can keep track of them. Hotels automatically do this for you. By not checking me in, the hotel had allowed me to 'disappear'. I did not object!
The hotel faces the water front, and is but a hundred metres or so from the Yi Ling Da Qiao (Yiling Big Bridge). The waterfront is lined with a succession of public parks.
Waterfront park taken from the Yi Ling Bridge in YiChang.
Because I was already suffering from an ear infection, picked up in my first and only visit to a public swimming pool (swimming in the river never made me ill), I spent most of the week either hiding in my room away from the heat outside, or laid up in bed with headaches and stuffed sinuses.
I did nevertheless make a point of taking a long walk along the riverfront every day, which, combined with illness and a lack of eating copious amounts of chocolate biscuits and bread, allowed me to lose at least a kilo or so.
One day MX and I took a walk over the Yiling bridge, crossed under it, and walked back. It was an interesting outing which provide me with some previously unseen views of YiChang. From the farmers on the river bank and the little Temple halfway up the mountain, to the new bridge being constructed downstream, to the view of the YiChang waterfront from the opposite side of the river, everything I saw was not only new, but once again inspired within me a sense of awe at the vastness of China. And at such times, I always find myself wondering what life must have been like a hundred years ago.
The other side of the Yi Ling Bridge in Yichang Opposite the Yangtze Hotel
As I have already said, we did not do much that week in YiChang, but we did make the effort to take a tourist bus up to the dam. On my boat trip in 2004 I had passed through the dam and had seen the tourist lookout, and I had been told then that one could take a bus up there.
A view from inside the loch at the three gorges dam project.
When I mentioned the idea to Mingxing and his sister, she told us that we could take the number three bus. I knew that this could not be correct, but agreed to take the trip to find out. That did not produce favourable results. It actually took us to a place beside the single lock on the lower dam, that lacked any type of view that would interest a tourist.
On our way back to the hotel, we called in at the tourist office I visited in 2004. It was around midday when we got there. They gave us all the necessary information, including that they only sold tickets a half a day in advance. As I was not feeling up to the 2 pm trip, we returned about 11 am next day; our last full day in YiChang. After purchasing our tour tickets, we went off to the Bus Depot to buy our Tickets for our homeward trip the next day.
After a leisurely lunch in the international trade center, we reported back to the tour office at 1:30 pm as instructed, and sat around until our scheduled departure time at 2 pm. The trip cost us 125 RMB each (although the tourist office next to our hotel quoted 140), and it turned out to be far more interesting than I had expected.
Taken in 2004:
The lookout is on the hill in the left/center background.
From town to the 'High Dam' where the lookout above the 5 locks is located, the trip took 50 minutes, and snaked over and through several mountains. I remember that one tunnel was around 3000 metres long.
What was incredible about travelling through these tunnels, was that at several points, there would be a break into sunlight of no more than 2 bus lengths of roadway, before entering a new tunnel. One the return trip I was shocked at how high up we were from the valley floor, given the short distance between mountains. It certainly gave my imagination something to ponder in thinking about how deep the dam must be in some places.
Our first port of call was the lookout itself. From the boat I traveled on last time, all one could see was a rounded cement lookout that belied the fact that behind it was a whole complex of buildings, fountains and views of other parts of the river not visible from the boat cruise. The lookout itself sits at the highest level of this tourist destination. Below it is a wonderful fountain, a huge sculpture of a book in both Chinese and English that tells the story of the place, a combined tourist information center and souvenir shop, and public facilities.
A view of the fountain and the 3 gorges High Dam taken from the lookout
Same Viewpoint but includes tourist office.
Taken from the 3 gorges high dam lookout.
Whilst the public facilities were clean and free, the normally priced at 1.5RMB bottled waters, were selling for 5 RMB in the information center. After a 30 minute look around, our bus traveled back down to the dam itself, where, unbeknownst to myself, we were to be privileged to be allowed to walk out onto the wall. As we were pulling up in the bus the tour guide was giving instructions.
Now at this point I must point out, that I was doing the 'Chinese Tour'. The guide did not speak English. I picked up on the fact that we were allowed to take our cameras etc, but we were not allowed to take our hats, cigarettes and cigarette lighters. As we joined the queue at the entrance, I realised that I had a cigarette lighter in my pocket and so ran back to the bus to give it to the driver. MingXing did not bother to enlighten me about anything else I might be carrying which ought to have been left in the bus.
And so it was as I went through the metal detector, that I was pulled aside and asked to empty my pockets. They took my sweets, my extra camera batteries, a small pack of tissues and my handkerchief. Having finally divested myself of absolutely everything in my trousers, (and without being facetious), I honestly expected that I was next going to be asked to drop my trousers. It was worse than any airport security I have ever encountered. Finally passing inspection, I was allowed to board the bus which took us onto the dam.
It was later explained to me that all the disposed of items were a potential threat to the operational capability of the dam, were they to have been dropped. I guess the paper and coin money that I was handed back to carry, my sunglasses, and my camera posed no threat at all.
Taken from above the three gorges high dam.
After our little trip, we headed back to the bus and set off for the other side of the river to visit a little park, from which we were given a different perspective of the three gorge dam project.
A display at the three gorges high dam tourist center.
In all the trip lasted about four and a half hours and well worth the money we paid, and I would recommend it to everyone. Of course, you might want to arrange to go on a tour with an English guide.
Exiting the Loch at the High Dam: Heading down to YiChang.
Entering the Loch at the High Dam: Heading down to YiChang.
I hope you have enjoyed this story and these photos.
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I decided to climb the brick wall beside my house to see were the sewage went. Yes! I know! Why would someone want to check out something like that? But you know, sometimes in China you just have to find your amusements where you can. You see as I may or may not have already mentioned, one needs to frequently flush the toilet with detergent, hot water and bleach, if one does not wish to be knocked over by the smell when returning home on a hot day. But in doing this very thing I had been concerned 'for the environment', for, to the best of my knowledge, the run off went directly into the rice paddy next door. But I am digressing!
Hong Hu is about 3 hours (165 Kms) South of Wuhan, (the Capital of Hubei), and is located on the Chang Jiang (Yangtsze) River. Did you expect some wonderful description to follow? Apart from, 'It is in the middle of nowhere, and is an old and dirty town (their words) although fast transforming into a modern city' there is really not much to say. It does have Lotus park and a lake which are very famous (in Hong Hu) but then again so am I. Have you ever heard of me? There you go then! (Actually the Lake is famous for a battle during the Liberation War - Communist vs. Guomingdang - KMT)
Arriving at the Hotel at 7 pm, we booked in to once again find ourselves faced with a room with one queen sized bed in it. Again we insisted and received a twin room. We stayed at the JinHui hotel which you can find listed at www.ctrip.com. It is located at LuoHu (lor - who) and is 2 minutes walk from the cargo vehicle border crossing into Xiang Gang (Hong Kong).
The Hong Kong Hotel was located in a back street, about 10 minutes from the Bund. We spent two days in the area before taking the train to HangZhou, where we spent a couple of days exploring 'West Lake'; and visiting "Shaoxing" about which I have already written at Magic City. The photos contained in this file are nothing spectacular, but for those who have never been to Shanghai, or never been to China, they might offer some insights.
Qing Ming, means clear and bright in Chinese. It is both the fifth term in the traditional lunar calendar and a festival to hold memorial ceremony for the dead. Being as how I was the only white face in the crowd, the Chinese attendants jumped on me, baptised me, confirmed me and handed me the brochure with all the church services times listed on it. They wanted to know if I was Catholic or Christian. Usually I just tell people I am a Muslim, and it makes them think twice. This time I said something that I regretted. Ha! I'm not telling you what I said!
These next two shots were taken at the corner store in Chibi town after we had finished with the museum tour. We had an hour to wait, and this gave the townsfolk the opportunity to gather around. At one point in time, we were surrounded by 36 people, but I must point out that people kept leaving and being replaced by others. This is a photograph of myself standing at the lookout at the Museum park at Chibi town (not PuQi). It shows me pointing to the Barge Landing on the Hong Hu side of the Yangtze River. Xin Di where I live and Teach is only 20 minutes drive from the barge crossing by the main road, and about 10 minutes via the levee road
Feng Qiao Road runs behind my school. Eventually it becomes Xi Zhong Shi Road (West-Middle Road) which turns into Dong (East) Zhong Shi Road. This then becomes West and East Bai Ta Road, which eventually curves around a park and canal to intersect at Dong Bei Street. A right turn at Dong Bei Street runs takes you to the City Gateway and on the otherside it is called Lou Men road. I followed Lou Men road a fair distance until I ended up in a little village, at which point I turned around and headed home
I am currently learning quite a lot of Chinese bad language of late. You see, whereas for the past 18 months I have lived without neighbours on this floor of my building, this semester brought with it so very many boys to this university, that the administration decided to fill the 3 rooms on either side of mine, with a total of thirty-six 2nd year male students, and my home has turned into a virtual drop-in center. My students have the freedom in my class to speak honestly. I tell them that I prefer the truth to politness. I tell all classes, that it is not my job to be their friend, and their purpose in class is neither to be friendly or unfriendly. I'm not there for friendship.
The Fairy Island on the Lake Taihu. which used to be called the Three-Mount Island, is a group of well-known islands and islets in the famou s scenic spot of Lake Taihu.it lies in the lake, and is 2. 0 kilometers away from the Turtle Head Peninsual, which is in the northeast shore. The entire islands are made up of the islets such as Daji, Xiaoji, Dongya, Xiya, with a total area of 12 hectares. (From a Sign at Taihu.)
Definition: King's Calendar Chronological Research
The Premise: Between the 5th and 3rd centuries BCE (but continuing down to at least 104 BCE), Sectarian redactors transcribed the legitimate 'solar year' chronological records of Israel and Judah, into an artificial form, with listed years as each comprised of 12 months of 4 weeks of 7 days, or 336 days per year, thus creating a 13th artificial year where 12 solar years existed.
When the Synchronous Chronological Data provided in the Books of Kings and Chronicles for the Divided Kingdom Period are measured in years of 336 days, the synchronisms actually align. [Refer to Appendix 5. to see how it synchronises the Divided Kingdom Period]
About the KingsCalendar Publisher
R.P.BenDedek is the owner and Editor of KingsCalendar.com which was originally set up to publicize his research results into the Chronology of Ancient Israel. Those results were published under the title: 'The King's Calendar: The Secret of Qumran'.
Whilst there have been many attempts to solve the chronological riddle of the Bible's synchronisms of reigns of the kings of Israel and Judah and their synchronism with other Ancient Near Eastern Nations, no other research is based on a simple mathematical formula which could, if it is incorrect, be disproved easily. To date, no one has been able to dismiss the mathematical results of this research.
Free to air Academic articles set forth Apologetics for and results of his discovery of an "artificial chronological scheme" running through the Bible, Josephus, the Damascus Documents of the Dead Sea Scrolls, and Seder Olam Rabbah.
King's Calendar Research: The Premise: Between the 5th and 3rd centuries BCE (but continuing down to at least 104 BCE), Sectarian redactors transcribed the legitimate 'solar year' chronological records of Israel and Judah, into an artificial form, with listed years as each comprised of 12 months of 4 weeks of 7 days, or 336 days per year, thus creating a 13th artificial year where 12 solar years existed.
If someone is going to state a date for any event in the history of Israel, then they can't provide that date in 'isolation'. This is to say that if someone uses the Bible to demonstrate that their date for something is correct, then you have to check to see if that date is supported by all of the surrounding Bible Chronology. Just about every academic alters the Biblical data wherever and whenever they choose. If the Bible is written by qualified commentators, then we ought to be able to conclude that the chronological information contained within it ought to be as trustworthy as any other ancient record, and its failure to synchronise results from Our failure to correctly apply that information. When was Solomon's Temple commenced? - 970 BCE When was Solomon's Temple completed? - 964 BCE When was Solomon's Temple destroyed? - 586 BCE
If 1 Samuel 13:1 however is meant to indicate that Saul reigned Thirty-Two years there might be some reasons why it appears corrupt. It may be that 1 Samuel 13:1 originally referred to Samuel, who was 31 years old when he became judge, and judged Israel for 32 years. Most commentators on Antiquities 6:14:9 believe it should read – Saul reigned Two and Twenty years. The King's Calendar relying on an artificial construct and Second Chronicles 36:21 determines that Saul commenced as King in 1038 BCE and that he reigned 28 Solar years or 30 artificial years (which was recorded as 32 years because the 29th Solar year when he was annointed Prince was a double artificial year.)
Jehu killed Jehoram (son of Ahab) of Israel, and Ahaziah of Judah (grandson of Ahab of Israel) and became King of Israel. The first chronologically related evidence for Jehu, shows that he paid tribute to the Assyrian King Shalmaneser in 841 BCE. An apparent new archaeological discovery suggests that it was not Jehu who slew Jehoram of Israel and Ahaziah of Judah, but Hazael king of Syria. "Archaeology is not an exact science, and deals more often in probabilities and possibilities than in irrefutable demonstrations (Peet. T.E. 1924. p 75).' Archaeologists and historians arbitrarily alter data to suit their pet theories. Fortunately this is not something that the kingscalendar has the luxury of doing.
Well,I am just back from the Army training and am blacker or browner then ever before. I checked my Email and came here to your website. It is really worth the trip to Yichang, and I will recomend it to others.
Reply - BenDedek
You can't be blacker! As all Westerners know, Chinese people are not black but Yellow! (We won't tell them this Chinese secret!)
Some Students at Zhixing Xueyuan are now actually doing their military training at the school. They are new students, and their army training officers get upset when I walk by, because student discipline breaks down.
I have to keep a strict face and when students turn to look at me, I use my hands to indicate that they should turn back and be quiet.
Mind you, one officer was commanding students, and when he saw me, he stopped talking and just stared at me. hehehheheheheh