Nations who do not need visa entering China

Posted by – February 20, 2015

Last night, a friend of my wife who is currently working in China as an English teacher, complained the Chinese working visa process for foreigner is bloody cumbersome, and even getting a tourist visa is expensive.

I joshed a bit, “Getting a Japanese passport! They don’t need visa to go to China”. Then her jaw dropped! “Seriously? Are you kidding!”

I know I am not kidding. Oddly enough, the Chinese government opened up its gate to the tourist from the following countries without any inspections.

How to Get to my Home Town Jiaxing

Posted by – February 19, 2015

For those who are planning to visit my hometown and my wedding reception in China, I have provided some brief directions to get there.

First of all, there are two international airports in Shanghai – Pudong International Airport and Hongqiao Airport. While most of the international airlines land at Pudong airport, there are some flights, especially from Japan, which arrive at Hongqiao!

You should definitely choose the flightto arrive at Hongqiao, as it will cut your journey time to Jiaxing by quite a bit. Here is why – if you arrive Pudong Airport, you will have to take the subway (green line, line 2), from the first station to end of the line. It will be an hour journey for you jamming into a crowded subway, especially if it’s rush hour!

So get the flight to Hongqiaong airport!! Once you arrive at Hongqiao Airport, then you will only need to get out of the airport and take the subway (purple line) from the station called Hongqiao Airport Terminal 1 station. (please see the map below), to the station “Hongqiao Railway Station” – only 2 stations away and probably just 5-10 minutes!!

 

Hong Qiao Airport

 

After arriving “Hongqiao Railway Station”, Your breath will be taken away by station’s jaw-droppingly colossal waiting room.  Buy a train ticket bound to “Jiaxing Nan” (嘉兴南)- literal meaning “Jiaxing South Station”. Since the waiting room is enormous, make sure that you find the right gate to get on your train in advance.  I have attached a screenshot below with some exemplary trains going to “Jiaxing Nan”. Go with the train number starting with “G” or “D” as they are fast! If you can read Chinese, go to this website and you can search the trains and times and book it online. http://www.tieyou.com

Screen Shot 2015-02-19 at 4.03.43 PM

Here is the link of a search result for your reference

http://www.tieyou.com/daigou/shanghai-jiaxingnan.html?date=2015-04-15&utm_source=gaotiew

The last train departs about at 21:30 PM, make sure you don’t miss that!  The party will be over  by that time anyway:)  Now get on the train. These trains should look like pseudo Shinkansei in Japan.  Believe me,  it will be very comfortable if you buy the “First Class seat”, which should costs around 10 $US.

high-speed-train-in-china

 

 

train-attendant-in-chinaNow you have got on the train. you would probably go like “Hew…, finally I can relax!” and plug in your laptop and watch some movies.! Yes. It is probably more developed than you thought China would be – every seat is equipped with power for your laptop if you choose a first class seat(一等座), and the girls will be prettier than the second class carriage, I hope. However, don’t relax for too long until you forget about the time. It should only take 25-35 minutes to arrive at the station you want to get off depending on the train you choose. The train stops very briefly at Jiaxing, 2 minutes or so. So please make sure don’t miss the station, because the next stop will be at a great distance away from Jiaxing, and you will cry if you miss it! So my advice is that you prick up your ears to hear the Chinese word “嘉兴南到了”(Jiaxing Nan Dao Le), meaning the train is approaching Jiaxing South station. The train may now have English announcement,  but it’s always safer to be prepared before your trip is cruelled.

There will be a plethora of taxis awaiting at the exit of the station after you get off the train. Show the taxi drivers the paper with the address of the hotel you reserved or the address of the hotel where my reception will be held, if you plan to stay there. It should cost around 15 – 20 RMB (Chinese Yuan) to go from the station to the reception hotel by taxi. If you are really bogged down, you can always call the landphone of my home for help, which I will share with you privately. We will sally forth and rescue you. If you come after April 15th., I can arrange people to pick you up at the station.

Other things that you need to be aware of is that, you will need to use Baidu Maps instead of Google Maps to get around. Click here to find out why you would prefer to use Baidu ditu over Google Maps in China.

In terms of Internet, China is a kingdom isolated from the rest of the world. Every major internet services such as Google, Facebook, Twitter, Ebay and YouTube have their Chinese version for good and bad reasons :) Let’s not discuss it here! Shall we? We can talk about it and you can complain to me when we meet in Jiaxing. Ergo, do fully utilise these Chinese alternatives to aid or entertain yourself such as Tudou, weixing or baidu when you are shielded by the Great gigantic firewall offered by Beijing.

Finally, this the address of the hotel where the reception will be held on the evening of April. 18th.

Location: Morgan Hotel (嘉兴摩根大饭店),  Address: 浙江嘉兴南湖区 广益路509号 ,近双溪路。

Tel: +86 0573 8369 9999

You may wonder why I don’t write the above address in English. Let me tell you why, – holding a piece of paper with a Chinese address written in English won’t help you much to get anywhere in China. So My advice for you is to write it down in Chinese or take a screenshot with your smart phone – making sure that your smart device has its battery in that case, and show them to the people around you.

If you still have questions? Please leave a comment below or send me a private message

 

Survival Phrases you may want to know

  • A first Class Ticket to Jiaxing (一张到嘉兴的一等座车票)
  • I want to go to HongQiao Train Station(我想去虹桥火车站)
  • I want to go to Jiaxing Morgan Hotel(我想去嘉兴摩根大饭店)

Why people prefer use Baidu Ditu over Google Map

Posted by – January 19, 2015

China is the only land on the planet that the Google Empire has not yet conquered and take control of its burgeoning hundreds of millions of internet users. The map service Google provided has been popular around the world over decades, however, it is simpler just not as good as the Baidu in China. here is the comparison of the maps around the airport in Shanghai.

Google Maps:

google-map

 

 

Baidu Map

baidu-map

Using Casperjs to test your website

Posted by – July 24, 2014

Today, I discovered a great tool called “casperjs”, which allows you to test your website with Headless WebKit. Having just tried a few minutes, I instantly fall in love with this tool. You can use it to simulate almost any browser behavior.

Installing it on ubunutu is quite straightforward.

 

#clone the repository from the master branch
git clone git://github.com/n1k0/casperjs.git

#Symlink the relevant file into your bin or /usr/local/bin
ln -sf ~/repositories/casperjs/bin/casperjs /bin/casperj
ln -sf ~/repositories/casperjs/bin/casperjs /usr/bin/casperj

The cat – Xiao Hui (小惠)

Posted by – July 9, 2012

Today, Anthony and I had little surprise for saving this little kitten in a rainy cold evening in Ebisu!

When we walked down to the Ebisu station from Ebisu garden after dinner. We heard some mowing! – It was a kitten in the brush of the road. She was starving, exhausted, trembling and terrified. But she is so adorable and lovely.

“Someone must have abandoned her. We can’t leave her like this~” – we spoke in unison.

We decided to take her home and to give her a new life.

Xiao hui under my mac

Now, she found it quite comfortable at her new home. We named her 小慧 after 恵比寿

image

 

She is also an avid reader

image

Her favorite yearning when she is sufficiently drowsy.

image

 

How to Delete up to Non-Whitespace Characters in Emacs

Posted by – October 10, 2011

I often want to delete a lot whitespaces between one word and another and had to hit the “Delete” buttons many times. Now I just discovered this command M-^ (delete-indentation &optional arg) works perfectly for my need.

  • Category: Emacs
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My new Pet Pachira

Posted by – May 2, 2011

Today, I got this shoot from Tokyo hands shop in Shinjuku. All the plants I had ended up succumbed. This time I am going to try my best to taken care of him. I am going to do exactly what the stuff in the shop told me to do – spraying water once a week, putting him under sunshine every morning. I hope he can be with me for a long time.

Plant

  • Category: Life
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Tokyo’s radiation level

Posted by – April 8, 2011

This is the best chart I have found so far from the NHK website

I was outside  when the peak level of the radiation happens :(
according to the chart.. it’s definitely getting better now. This radiation accident seems like a bit overblown. It was quite scary on 15th when the spark happened. I could not image how much radioactive stuff was leaked near the plant.

Although the current radiative level in Tokyo is not too worrying, Tokyo Electric has poorly handled this accident, which caused hundreds of thousands foreigners flee away from the country. It’s time for the Japanese government to review its country’s emergency policy.

I surivived in the 5th biggest earthquake in history

Posted by – March 11, 2011

Friends, I am still alive.!  I thought I would be buried in the office today.

All the train are stopped and I am walking home now. Everyone is walking on the street, and all cars on the road stuck in the traffic jam. This is a scene I probably won’t be able to see again in my life!

Don’t know what is the impact on the north Japan, which is much more close to the epicenter ..

Apart from the bankruptcy of Lehman Brothers, this is the biggest event so far I have experienced.

2011_Tōhoku_earthquake

Finally I can really do snowboarding

Posted by – March 5, 2011

it’s my third year now doing snowboarding in Japan. It’s become more and more fun after you can balance your body not falling over. Occasionally even if you fall over, it does not hurt so much anymore.

The fresh air and the feeling of shuttle back and force to this boundless snow world do make me forget the busy life in Tokyo.
Japan is one of the best countries for snowboarding lovers, where there are a loads of snowboarding resorts.

The temperature usually is not too low so you can enjoy the sport but also not worrying too much about the cold weather.

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