Posts Tagged ‘Heat’

Expo is go!

May 5, 2010

The world Expo has kicked off and as expected, the crowds have been nasty – so much so I feel tired just reading about it. A combination of heat, lack of shade and massive queues are unsurprisingly leading to tourist angst and frustration.

The Expo is set across a massive park which is divided into five large sections. Two of the most popular pavilions; USA and Japan, are on opposite ends, with an approximate hour long walk to get from one to the other. Due to the lack of shade, people are forced to use the shadows cast by these grand structures themselves in order to avoid actually tanning – which we all know is a big no no in China. White skin = happiness!

Anyone who has been to China will know that the sun can be ridiculously potent during the summer months, and whilst it is still only Spring, temperatures will be climbing by the day. Due to the ever present smog layer, it’s not particularly common to have clear skies, and hot days are generally a combination of sweat inducing humidity, and a super glary smoggy haze sky. When that sun does poke through the smog however, the combination of the heat and humidity is an absolute killer.

People have been turning out in droves for the Expo after it was opened on the weekend with a massive fireworks display and typical epic (and somewhat gaudy) live Chinese extravaganza. Despite the complaints regarding unintuitive layout, queuing and heat, you can be assured that the Chinese patriotism on display would be so in your face it would be almost difficult to stomach.

I only wish I could get there myself, as despite the pain and frustration, it would still be a blast. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, I most definitely do heart Shanghai.

Hot hot hot!

July 29, 2009

Last night as I was watching the SBS world news, the weather came on where a 3D globe slowly rotates and they show the temperature of each individual country. As it rolled around to China, it showed both Shanghai and Beijing sitting at around 31 degrees; a big jump up from the 15 degrees that Melbourne is currently (not) enjoying. I thought back to when we were there, suffering through those few months of summer where the humidity had temperatures feeling a good 10+ degrees hotter than they actually were. While a day in Wuxi might have been 28-30 on the weather charts, when humidity was taken into account, the actual temperature really felt somewhere around the 43-45 degree mark.

 

There were days that were so hot it was unbearable. You would wake up in the morning afer a night of air-conditioning flicking – leaving the air-conditioner on lead to sore throats, and would often be too cold regardless. As soon as you hopped out of bed you would feel unpleasant, but as long as you had AC, it wasn’t too bad. You’d shower and feel somewhat refreshed, then get dressed and head out for the day in t-shirt, shorts and sandals. You could never wear socks and shoes, it was simply too hot. And then, as soon as you went outside, you felt the need to shower again.

 

The humidity was various degrees of disgusting. You became used to living with a constant sheen of sweat all over your body, with large wet patches beneath your armpits. You would reach around and feel your back beneath your top and it was completely soaked – dripping. As you walked around feeling uncomfortable, you would notice that the Chinese were wearing long pants and long shirts; completely dry. While some walked around in jeans and regular wear, others – mainly older men, walked around in rolled up singlets with their big bellies sticking out, fanning themselves with hand-made bamboo paddles.

 

Some days I miss China so much that it almost makes me feel anxious. I feel like I need to go back there to get it out of my system. Other days I remember specifics such as the almost unbearable Summer and I am happy to live in a country with a much more moderate temperature.

 


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