Trying to hide from our secret admirer! (aka Beag)

Trying to hide from our secret admirer! (aka Beag)

In one of my previous posts; Our Secret Dog I’ve mentioned our secretly adopted dog called Beag. He lives in the same building as us and we regularly see him in and around our complex. He’s such a cute dog and we would love to have him as our own. But, pity to say we can’t actually just rob him from his actual owners… but we like to pretend he’s ours!

A few days ago we had to pick up a box which my family sent me from Ireland, arriving in Chengdu in only about 6 days, it was extremely fast! We had to go and pick it up at the storage area, so we took a bus to go.

We stepped out of our building and started walking, and who did we meet but Beag. We were delighted to see him! So he started walking with us and sniffing about, out of our complex and down the road with us.

He would disappear for a few seconds, then suddenly reappear at our sides!

But then we started getting worried, we were still walking down the road and he was still following us. ‘I hope he doesn’t follow us all the way’, I thought. ‘What happens if we get on the bus and he jumps in with us?’

We were also afraid in case he becomes confused and can’t find his way home. Or a car or scooter hit him. They don’t stop for pedestrians crossing the road, they certainly won’t stop for a 1.5 foot dog!

But still he followed! And the cute thing was, he would be walking in front of us, and then look back to make sure we were still there!

Suddenly, he ran across the road and and started sniffing about ‘Good, maybe he will get distracted and will forget about us’. 

But no! Suddenly I see he’s back at our side!

Oh! A dog! He’ll definitely want to go over and have a smell, that’s our chance to lose him! 

Wrong again… Beag really wants to find out where we are going!

So we start getting to a corner of the street…. and we look around.

“Right Aisling, he’s distracted, quick, we’ll run around the corner and hopefully he’ll loose us and he’ll head back home”

So we started running around the corner and down the road to where we have to cross the street.

We made it to the road and look behind…

“Oh Aisling I see him! He’s coming this way! He’s looking around for us!”

Oh no, I really don’t want him crossing this road; it’s too busy and we don’t want him to get hurt.

We stand still and hope he doesn’t appear next to us.

“He’s passed us, but he’s still looking around” my boyfriend says.

The green light appeared, we quickly cross and start walking to the bus stop.

“I can see him, he’s at the bus stop at the opposite side, we’re ok!”

Phew! We didn’t exactly want him following us onto the bus. We had to go pretty far to collect my package.

…..

After we collected our package and headed home, we were wondering what happened to Beag… did he get home safe?

But thankfully the next day we saw him at our building!

He came running up to us and we started petting him, glad to see he made his way home!

Chinese people really love their dogs, but when they are on their own, it’s a little dangerous for them. Drivers only notice pedestrians crossing the street when they are literally 1 foot in front of them and then nearly crashing into them (haha sometimes we say drivers here wear those blinkers/blinders for horses and only see people when they are literally right on top of them), so they definitely won’t be looking out for small animals.

But hopefully Beag has a bit of common sense and will avoid the roads… oh and look left and right!

再见

爱玲

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Cycling About In Chengdu!

Cycling About In Chengdu!

Lately, because the weather has been steadily becoming cooler and cooler, myself and my boyfriend decided that we should start cycling to work. During the summer it is just impossible because of the heat!

In my previous campus where I worked, I used to cycle. It was only 10 minutes down the road so it was handy to get to.

But now I’ve purchased a new fancy folding bike! These are becoming more common in Chengdu, as they are known as being a ‘city bike’. If you live in a small apartment, you can easily fold it up and store it somewhere.

The old bike that I had was bought at Walmart, and although I’ve had it for over 2 years, It was just a bit too heavy for me and had no gears. Because I had a basket at the front of it, it was great for going shopping with, but for cycling longer distances, it didn’t do the job.  My new bike has 6 gears and it’s much lighter, making it much easier to cycle about.

Before biking, I would either go with my boyfriend on his e-bike, or either take the bus. I didn’t really mind taking the bus, once I got a seat that was fine for me! But I was always worrying about traffic and if I would be late. Plus I had to walk 10 minutes to the bus stop from my apartment, then another 5/10 minutes to my work. So sometimes it took 30 minutes or sometimes 1 hour travelling! It all depended on the traffic.

Now with my bike, It takes me 30 minutes cycling to work! I don’t have to worry about heavy traffic and I always know roughly the time I will arrive. Less stress now!

Plus, because Chengdu is a very flat city.. hills are virtually non-existent.. so that also makes it much easier!

Although I do enjoying cycling, I am always on my guard. Always. Constantly looking behind me, to my left, right. People and drivers are very unpredictable here. No one here uses their indicators or mirrors. When I actually see somebody indicating I’m shocked!

Also, you rarely see anybody with helmets on… well actually you will.. when the weather gets cold in the winter and everyone has them on to keep their heads warm. That’s the only time you’ll see people wearing them! But we bought cycling helmets and a light that connects to the back, so people will see us in the dark. I feel a bit safer knowing that!

Some of my friends have asked me if I be worried while cycling… of course I do. I’m always afraid if someone will open their car door without looking and I’m coming from behind. (I actually get quite worried over this).

I’m afraid that a car will clip me, an e-bike will run through a run light and crash straight into me.. I’m afraid that I won’t be able to cross the road because no cars will let me out. I’m constantly worried.

That’s why I cycle slow and take my time, looking around to make sure nothing or nobody will suddenly appear in front of me.

My route to work isn’t the most scenic; there’s not much to look at… but I enjoy knowing that fact that I won’t be late for work… plus I’m also doing a bit of exercise!

再见!

爱玲

The flooding of Chengdu, every time it rains.

During the month of August, it rains quite a bit more than usual. And with this rain, comes plenty of puddles. Everytime it rains, there are puddles everywhere. And not just small ones, no, these could carry on 6 or 7 feet in length. You do see drains, but they always seem to be located in the wrong place. You see a drain, and about 3 feet away is a huge puddle of water! On the whole, Chengdu is a flat place, so water naturally lies where is falls. So a lot of water builds up!

About 2 weeks ago, there was very bad weather. I’ve never seen it that bad before. The wind was wild and the ground was  a swimming pool. I was surprised to hear after that there was actually a storm somewhere in Sichuan, so I think we got hit a little with it. Rafa was supposed to go to work, but he cancelled; the weather was too bad, plus riding on his e-bike would have been a disaster. I’m pretty sure the flooding was terrible in some parts. Also, in some places, there are sort of like shiny tiles on the ground. So when these get wet, its incredibly easy to slip on them, walking, but especially on e-bikes.

Rain makes us not want to venture outside; but for work is has to be done. Yesterday after work I got caught out on the rain. Thankfully I took my umbrella, but my shoes were not made for the rain, becoming soaked as I walked outside the campus. With no water draining away, the level easily reached 3cm in some places. By the time I got to the bus, my feet were squelching in my shoes.

The Chinese way to handle the rain; wear flip-flops. Throw a pair of flip-flops on them, and away they go, which is rather sensible.

Yet, although when the weather is bad in Chengdu, usually the next day is a great day; the sun is shining and the sky is actually blue! The rain seems to clear the sky of pollution. Even the level dramatically drops to a healthy level. Our lungs can get a respite from the pollution for once!

So theres actually a small silver-lining to the bad weather after all!

再见!

Aisling.

I want one

The reason for my wanting of an e-bike is because I’m jealous that my boyfriend has bought one, and I want one. Because he lives and works at a different campus he thought it would be handy to buy one so he can both visit me and leave me home. He lives nearer the centre of Chengdu while I live 30 minutes by metro.

My own bike is still out of service as I have been too busy to get it fixed, but when I do, I know It’ll be a disappointment. The weather is very hot at the moment, and I am not looking forward to cycling to work at all. Whereas with an e-bike, there will be no sweating and you get there faster. But I suppose I could always buy one in the future.

E-bikes are big businesses in China. Particularly in Chengdu, there are so many. Mainly due to the fact that most of Chengdu is pretty flat, it’s an ideal place to drive one. There are apparently 120 million e-bikes in China, and this number is increasing.

There are a few different varieties of e-bikes that I have seen. There are quite small ones, usually used by older women with babies. They usually have a small seat at the back so the baby sits there. These are not used for going long distances.

Small e-bike

Another type is the one my boyfriend has. These are the nicer looking ones. These are (to me) Italian looking, and they are more like scooters. Many of the new ones have really cool designs on them. You can fit two people on these.

Similar to the one we have. But yes you can fit 2 people on it. (girl unknown)

Similar to the one we have. But yes you can fit 2 people on it. (girl unknown)

 

The biggest types are used for going long distances. They are sturdier but they are also a lot bigger and heavier. You can fit two comfortable, but I often see two adults and a child on these. Usually families.

Typical e-bike

Although e bikes are really handy, there are quite a lot of accidents. I personally have never seen any, but from what I see around me, there are many near misses. I know I’m not safe while cycling, but these e-bikes can go up to 60kph so they are pretty fast.

And so many people don’t wear helmets. We are planning on buying them because, we would rather be safe than sorry.
Also, China has a law stating that only one person is allowed to sit on an e-bike. I never knew this law actually existed. People ignore this rule completely, and the police don’t seem to care. Even if they did, the amount of people driving these things, they would never eradicate the problem.E bike family

 

Usually roads are like this.

Usually roads are like this.

So If plan on staying in China for another year, I might invest in one. They are pretty cheap to western standards. You can get second hand ones for 1300 Yuan, or 155 Euro. So cheap!

Aisling.