Black Country news and blogs Friday 15 December 2017
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Desperately Seeking Adventure

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Beijing’s Olympic Dream… 

9 Dec 17

2008 brought China’s first Olympic Games in the country’s showcase capital city, Beijing.

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Beijing, China: Operation Chaoyang! 

1 Dec 17

Touching down into Beijing’s Capital International Airport felt surreal, it was something that I had wanted for ages but I wasn’t ready for the craziness that awaited me! Finding my apartment instantly gave me reassurance and having that WeChat Pay …

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Flying High… Emirates! 

23 Nov 17

Fulfilling a dream I recently flew with Emirates from Birmingham, UK to Beijing, China.

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Notting Hill & Kensington, London 

5 Nov 17

Stepping back into London, Golborne Road became my runway, giving me all kinds of European and North African flavours! Seeing Trellick Tower being fashioned into its next phase for London City living, I had almost everything! Of course Portobello …

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City of London: Cathedrals, Banks & Markets… 

4 Nov 17

London crept back into my life somehow, I had waited three long months to renew my visa to return to China.

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China High Speed Rail: Wuhan – Shanghai! 

24 Oct 17

For a developing country, China’s high speed rail network is quite remarkable, looking at one section that I took at the end of July 2017 brought together one place that I lived in for two years and three others that I have visited.

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Like A Prayer: China & Tibet… 

8 Oct 17

I’m not down for religion as such but I don’t judge someone else’s beliefs, shelving those holy scriptures to one side I do love discovering new places of worship whatever the chosen religious flex.

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Cardiff, Wales: Castles, Bays & Mines… 

3 Oct 17

Living life dangerously I chose Cardiff, Wales for a weekend full of whatever I could find from that UK capital city.

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Historic York 

1 Oct 17

So, York had been on my list for time, being attracted to its historical charm I wanted to see if it was really just a Shambles! Before there was a New York it started with York, representing that former Viking and Roman settlement had to be done …

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Next Stop… Leeds, England! 

7 Sep 17

Beating my post Scotland blues I looked towards Yorkshire to serve something industrial and then historical.

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Back To Birmingham 

2 Sep 17

Birmingham hasn’t been part of my life for some time due to being in Wuhan, China.

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Helensburgh & Loch Lomond, Scotland 

2 Sep 17

So, I hadn’t made any reservations in Glasgow, I was told that I needed to book my flights to Scotland and my friend would sort me out.

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Destination: Glasgow 

1 Sep 17

Glasgow, Scotland called my name! Boarding my flight from Birmingham I touched down into a dreary Glasgow but my China bestie, Fiona was waiting for me at domestic arrivals so it all good.

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2017: No Summertime Sadness! 

15 Aug 17

Summertime during 2017 has so far been busy, mad and worth every second whatever happened during my final month in China and beyond.

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Hubei Province: China’s Central Heart! 

12 Aug 17

Hubei province was my home for over two years as I lived in Wuhan, the provincial capital was exploding before my eyes but I wanted to break out of the city limits to see more of Hubei during my time there.

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China: Cities Off The Radar! 

9 Aug 17

China’s megacities have impressed me much during my time, well I am yet to experience Beijing but that will all change very soon! Shanghai may be a city of neon lights with a skyline to bring down New York City’s performance but I like to go ‘off the…

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Flying High… Aeroflot Russian Airlines 

31 Jul 17

It had been two years or so since I had flown for more than three hours, embarking on my first long haul flight with Aeroflot Russian Airlines was something I had been looking forward to.

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Wuchang: Libraries, Parks & Street Life! 

18 Jul 17

So, it’s safe to say that Wuchang called me back two weeks ago or so, I adore this part of Wuhan city even though its changing.

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Teaching English: Wuhan’s Final Semester… 

9 Jul 17

With regret I announce that my time teaching is coming to a close, with my departure back to the United Kingdom growing closer I want to look back over the last six months.

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The Nanchang Weekender! 

29 Jun 17

China has given me so much to be thankful for the last two years, remaining within its vast mainland I have visited cities regardless of their size or popularity.

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Enchanted Enshi 

17 Jun 17

As the clock ticks before my departure back to England I wanted to explore the city of Enshi, Hubei.

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Next Stop… Hefei, China! 

2 Jun 17

Located in central China I was attracted to Hefei because it’s not a mega-city, but a growing city that’s got a lot of competition from its neighbours.

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On The Metro: Wuhan Metro, Line 4 

27 May 17

Line 4 of the Wuhan Metro will be the final of my Wuhan inspired ‘On The Metro’ blog theme, the network keeps on expanding so who knows what the future might bring? Anyway, stretching from Wuhan Railway Station all the way to Huangjinkou, it’s safe …

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Lhasa, Tibet: Temples, Pilgrims & Palaces 

21 May 17

Lhasa kept giving me everything but the dizzying altitude had sent me sick, waking up with what felt like a hangover and a nosebleed I hadn’t paid all that money to rest! Dosed up with a handful of un-named tablets and a bottle of oxygen I was set …

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Lhasa, Tibet: Like A Prayer… 

17 May 17

Refreshed from my train journey from Lanzhou I was ready to begin my Lhasa city tour.

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Lhasa, Tibet: Heaven On Earth! 

13 May 17

Tibet was the big one, the trip that almost didn’t happen, through the craze of cancellations I made my two day journey to the Tibet Autonomous Region from Wuhan, China at the end of last month.

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Wuhan: Hankou’s Calling! 

27 Apr 17

Hankou was calling, trading a weekend on the booze to be cultured.

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Hangzhou: Lakes, Pavilions & Tea Plantations… 

13 Apr 17

Waking up to a new day in Hangzhou, I was more than ready for my third China Highlights tour that would take me to the best sights in town! From the idyllic views over West Lake to lunch at Chenghuang Pavilion I was in for a royal treat, I even had …

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Hangzhou: The First 24 Hours! 

9 Apr 17

With the second semester of my second year teaching English underway the Spring Festival break seemed much longer than February, with the arrival of April signified another national holiday to enjoy.

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On The Metro: Wuhan Metro, Line 1 

30 Mar 17

Spanning a great distance from Hankou North to Dongwu Avenue, Line 1 of the Wuhan Metro gets me to where I need to go.

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2014-2017: The Road To China… 

27 Mar 17

After graduating with honours I was not prepared for the journey ahead of me, taking a road less travelled before wasn’t easy but what really is in this life? In honour of this 300th blog post that marks six years of blogging, I want to see how life …

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Shenyang’s Korean Connection… 

12 Mar 17

Striding back to my hotel the next morning feeling slightly worse for wear, my second full day of sightseeing wasn’t going to be wasted! Refreshed from the night before I got back out to discover Shenyang’s city sights, feeling tender I had three …

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Serving Up… Shenyang, China! 

11 Mar 17

Shenyang called me, leaving Harbin West Railway Station by high speed train on the last day of January 2017 I was ready to see my second ‘off the radar’ city in China! I didn’t have a plan, I merely knew of a few places that I could potentially see …

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Harbin: Snow Sculptures, Siberian Tigers & Ice Festivals… 

28 Feb 17

Harbin was serving everything that I wanted and more during that Spring Festival 2017 trip, I was just about to embark on my private tour that would take me to three of Harbin’s most famous sights.

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Harbin’s Frozen Riverside… 

23 Feb 17

Harbin tested me beyond the point of crazy, the weather plummeted down to a toe-curling minus twenty-six degrees below freezing.

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Harbin: China’s Russian Secrets… 

10 Feb 17

Chinese New Year came around again, I decided after the warmth of HK, Macau and Guangzhou that I wanted to experience somewhere in the far north of China for 2017’s festivities.

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Chinese Spring Festival 2016 

5 Feb 17

China doesn’t do Christmas so it brings the big guns out during the annual Chinese New Year celebrations, experiencing my first Chinese Spring Festival took me over the borderline and back again! From Hong Kong to Guangzhou via Macau I was on my …

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On The Metro: Wuhan Metro, Line 2 

27 Jan 17

I’m not one for the bus, wherever there is a metro I am underground before you could say ‘Mind The Gap!’ After living in Wuhan, China for sometime now I have seen the steady growth of its metro system.

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China: The Wildcard Cities! 

26 Jan 17

Following the crowd is boring, dealing three of China’s wildcard cities showed me how to be a travel trailblazer! Bowing down to the favourites like Shanghai and Beijing I wanted to give three alternative cities my full attention, I took on that …

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Teaching English: Semester One, Second Year! 

22 Jan 17

I can’t believe where the time has gone?! It only seems like a moment since I returned to work after the summer break! The first semester of my second year at Etonkids has finished! From one fabulous parent showcase to being the first teacher in my …

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Wuhan: My Favourite Things… 

21 Jan 17

Wuhan has been my home since July 2015, this Central Chinese city definitely has its moments but I want to focus on some of my favourite things.

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Kunming, China: City of Flowers 

22 Dec 16

Kunming wasn’t a bad decision! I negotiated that contract to secure my Christmas holiday for 2016’s festivities.

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18 Months In China… 

16 Dec 16

Could I call China home? I have now been living and working in China for eighteen months, the time is zooming past me but this experience keep on surprising me! As I wave a fond farewell to 2016 I want to recapture the previous six months to see how …

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This Departure Lounge of Dreams 

31 Oct 16

Life is sometimes all about waiting so I like to look at things as if I was waiting in a departure lounge waiting for a flight.

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Jinan, China: Shandong’s Spring City 

27 Oct 16

Boarding my High Speed train, Jinan was on my radar! Speeding toward Shandong’s Spring City was all I could think about, seeking a mountain and spring was on my Jinan checklist.

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Qingdao: Seashores, Beer & German History… 

22 Oct 16

Did anyone say Qingdao Pijiu? That once German governed corner of China’s Shandong province called my name! Qingdao gave me tones of Germanic Realness with a dash of seaside scenery! Genuflecting before a certain European looking church I was kindly …

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Chinese National Day 2015 

13 Oct 16

Chinese National Day 2015 served all kinds of big city overness with a smattering of scandalous behaviour! Getting my life I snatched my passport back to experience Chongqing and Chengdu, two cities that stole my heart for very different reasons.

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Essential Travel Tools: Top Gadgets for the Modern Explorer 

30 Sep 16

Getting the most out of travelling means being prepared.

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Next Stop… Zhengzhou, China! 

26 Sep 16

Within life’s strange arrangements it good to turn to a new city to explore, the look of Zhengzhou had me instantly captivated! Packing enough into three days I had my work out, I was on the lookout for some Chinese Kungfu and a certain Yellow River…

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2016: No Summertime Sadness! 

10 Sep 16

My second summer living in Wuhan, China was equally as epic as 2015, well if not a little more hectic work-wise! Keeping within the boundaries of Hubei’s Wuhan City I didn’t feel blue for one second, of course there was no summertime sadness going on…

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