Thursday, July 25, 2013

Building Everywhere - the Urban Sprawl

The ongoing building everywhere used to shock me but now it is just standard and blends into the surroundings.  I guess being back in the USA I realized that the scaffolding, cement trucks and construction workers everywhere on the streets of Shanghai, Xian, Sanya, Suzhou, etc is not normal.  Over the last week I took some pictures of new buildings, elevated highways and metro lines being built.  
The latest statistic that I heard was that China believes that 300 Million people will move into the cities from 2010 to 2025 (that's nearly the population of the US).  At the end of 2012, the total urban population was 712 Million (52.6%) from 26% in 1990.  
The biggest construction of them all!  The Shanghai tower will stand
approximately 632 metres (2,073 ft) high and will have 121 stories.  Tallest in China
and the second tallest in the world.

Massive apartment complex of 20-30 buildings of 10ish stories.

On my way to COMAC, new businesses going up everywhere.

About 15 in my 10 km bike to work.

Another one.

They love the apartment/hotel with shopping and restaurants.

More apartments.  Many are empty for years.

If you build it, they will come.

With new building you need more subways (elevated
in this case)

And more elevated highways to handle the traffic.

This is the beginning of 20 building complex across from COMAC.

Thursday, July 11, 2013

Ultra-Violet Night

I just got back from our annual Home Leave to the USA.  This is a benefit to all expats where the company provides each family member a round-trip ticket back to their home city.  Or a lump sum, like our case since we didn't go directly back to our home city.  Anyway, that is reason that there has been such a delay since our last post.

This post is about a dinner that Yangmei and I went to at the Ultra-Violet restaurant.  It's not really a restaurant but an intimate dinner for 10 at some remote location.  We met our other dinner guests at the Mr. and Mrs. Bund restaurant and took at 20 minute shuttle to the our spot.   Paul Pairet, a local somewhat famous chef, was cooking the 25-course meal for us.  

Entrance to Mr. and Mrs. Bund

We had assigned seating.  UVB is the menu that
we had.  As you can see, their was movies, pictures
and other visual presented on the table and walls.

This was the preparation for a dry-ice, single
spoonful of a grapefruit-popping dish.

1st course - a single spoonful!  It literally burst in our

This was a yogurt dish.

Chocolate covered fograis.


We were in the forest for this dish of truffles.

They blew cigar smoke under the cover for that smokey flavor.

Not sure what this was other than really good.

Make your own instant noodles.

Squirted out the noodles through a syringe.  

Here is the 10 - we knew one couple and there were 8 of
us in our group.  Astroturf on the table and it felt like we
were on a picnic.

Two dishes that looked alike but tasted very different.

One of the five desserts.

Breakfast - well not really since this was an apricot that only
looked like an egg.

To our surprise, Chef Paul was in the back cooking!