Happiness and melancholy can be found in close together. The former can be found at a parking garage at Manila Airport when arriving at 4:55 on our favorite flight Cebu Pacific 5J679 from Shanghai. The latter can be found in a bathroom stall at the very same airport when changing back sandles into sneakers.
However, this weekend was about something different. This weekend was about celebrating the awesomeness of being able to hop to the Philippines for a weekend to go diving. Yes, we can!
Continue reading “Diving Weekend in the Philippines – Yes we can”
Nanjing greets us with a beautiful sea of morning fog below us (or air pollution but only hardcore rationalists would ponder over the difference). From our room on 69 floor, we have a view on the lake and the hills in which the Sun Yatsen memorial lies.
Nanjing is so close to Shanghai but we never managed to visit. Until last weekend. Patrick gave us a nudge. Well, Nanjing is indeed worth a visit.
Continue reading “Relax weekend in Nanjing”
Its 5.45am an pitch black when we step out the door. As out eyes accustom to the light, shapes emerge from the shadows – thousands of them. Dressed in in Army winter coats, they march through the dark streets on Taishan’s mountain top. The sunrise we came to see, becomes marginalized by the spectacle of 人山 (People Mountain) that unfolds before us.
We have climbed the over 6.000 steps of Taishan (Mount Tai). The climb is said to reward not only with a beautiful sunrise but also a life of onehundred years. Lets see.
But most importantly, the climb of Taishan is the essence of China itself: Beautiful nature, tranquil temples, and people, people, people. Continue reading “人山人海 on Taishan – the quintesential China”
At sunrise we find a large pile fresh dung, only 5m from our tents. While we pack, we keep an eye out. Then we see it; a Kamchatka brown bear on the opposite river bank. The bear starts to fish, at the spot where we caught two trouts last night. As if we are not there, the bear crosses to our camp’s shore. As we enter our rafts, the curious bear is less the 5 meters from our camp. Continue reading “Bears and Volcanos of Kamchatka”
At 6m depth, I turn around and see her. Michi is drifing on the bottom, not breathing. Three strong kicks, I am with her, grab her and bring her up to the surface. Mask off, regulator off and start rescue breathing.
Luckily, this is just a scenario in the Rescue Diver course and Michi is fine (exept for some bruises and some water in the lungs from my not yet perfect rescue attempts).
We are back at Malapascue for an intense dive training session with Thresher Shark Divers.
Here is the full story.
Continue reading “PADI Rescue Diver at Malapascua”
The familiar silhouette of the Eiffel Tower is clearly visible against the gray sky. Streets are lines by typical Paris architecture. Only the Seine is about 9,000km away. We are in Skycity in Tianducheng, a suburb of the City of Hangzhou.
The Chinese Eiffel Tower yeas built 9 years before world leaders came to Hangzhou for the G20 summit. For what reason? None apparent, other than for Chinese couples to take wedding pictures. Continue reading “One Day in Paris – Tianducheng”
Zhangjiajie – world famous as the Pandora Mountains from the movie Avatar – is a stone forest with needles of quartz sandstone which reach up to over 1.000m. Despite all warnings, we decided that it is the place to go over the May holidays and we – the brave – were rewarded by small crowds, magnificent views and thigh pains worse than almost anything we have ever experienced.
Continue reading “Zhangjiajie – A visit to the Avatar Mountains”
For our 9th anniversary, Michi organized a surprise brunch at Waldof Astoria, today. We started out with Champagne and Oysters in the Long Bar. The Oysters are the best we have had in Shanghai so far. Continue reading “Oyster Brunch at Waldorf Astoria”
We finally made it, after 1.5 years. Both, Shenhua and SIPG have eluded me and always had away games when we would have had time to go. But yhanks to Michis new colleagues at the consulate (highly skilled, as they managed after two weeks what i have not managed in 1.5 years) we got to watch SIPG FC agaist Hubei. Continue reading “SIPG FC for the Win”
Majestic creatures. Here is a video from the second dive at Koh Bon on April 5th. Continue reading “Manta Ray at Koh Bon”