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A rainy trip to Suzhou, or not so much.

Ye has an errand to run in the city of Suzhou. It's about a two to three hour drive northeast towards Shanghai depending on traffic. She invited me along because she thought I might like to see more of a China. it was pouring down rain when we left and we're expecting more over weekend.


The testing requirements for Covid protocols and going to be a bit of a pain. I will need to test before I leave Suzhou and head back to Hangzhou. I will also need to test three straight days after I return. There's an online form that the school office staff will help me with. This is just for leaving one province and heading to another. I was going to have to fill out a form for my golf outing as well this Sunday, but we opted to delay a week because the weather is a bit wet through the weekend. Ugh. I really want to play 18 holes this weekend. If I get my grading and reports done early Sunday I might hit the driving range again.


Sooooooo. We get in the car and head north and after a two hour drive we arrive to the edge of Suzhou. Lots of folks around Hangzhou describe Suzhou as the second most beautiful city in China. Cool. Let's have a look. And then I get this message on WeChat from our HR department...



F me. Seriously? Which in turn leads to this conversation.



Ok then. My gut tells me this is more of a threat than a reality. I might have a three day quarantine headed my way. If so I might miss a day or two of school. Crud. We shall see.


It's Saturday morning and Ye took off to run her errand. She has to pick up a large check from her ex to help pay for Charlie's tuition. I'm learning that Hangzhou is a bit different when it comes to moving money. Not every city in China operates like Hangzhou with Alipay. Ye paid for breakfast with paper cash. First time I've seen that done. I've got about an hour to hang in the hotel room before we meet in the lobby. Here's the quick tour. For the exhibitionist you have a shower that's open to the rest of the room. Ye opted to close the curtain. Bummer.



The plan was to see some sights, but given the nature of my possible quarantine status were just going to head back. Dang.


Just how many Covid cases in China are we talking about? Here's the report from yesterday.



If you couldn't find it in this map (which is not geographically very accurate) there was 1 reported case in Suzhou yesterday. This is a city of millions. Shanghai has 18. Hangzhou has 11. Shanghai competes for largest city in the world. I was looking forward to getting some pictures today. The rain seems to have disappeared. It's a bit overcast, but really a nice day, for a car ride back to Hangzhou. Again I say, F me.


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48protz
48protz
Oct 09, 2022

After I cajoled your blog address out of Durkee yesterday, I've been binging while watching football games. Your entries are far more interesting. I appreciate your candor as well as your insights. Clearly, you are Intrepid Man.

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David Shick!
David Shick!
Oct 09, 2022
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I know of few people with such a wonderful vocabulary. I sure miss breakfast on Friday morning. Pass along a hi to the other venerable gentlemen.

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Not sure if this is accurate but seems that folks do what the government says with little resistance. I'd guess they may complain but still comply. Is that accurate?

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David Shick!
David Shick!
Oct 08, 2022
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I would say they don't complain much, but do comply with NO resistance.


UPDATE: All the highways have tolls on them. It doesn't cost much. Ye told me it was about $10 USD for the entire trip. After we passed through the last toll entering Hangzhou they were having every car stop, get out, and get in line to test. Everyone. It took a while standing in line, but we did it. Fortunately my health code is still coming up green. Will check again in the morning and pray that it's still green, not yellow. If yellow I'm staring down a three day quarantine.

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I thought no jump ball during Covid was an overreaction but this might take the cake.

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David Shick!
David Shick!
Oct 08, 2022
Replying to

I keep having similar thoughts, but if one of the largest cities in the world has around 20 total cases, they might be doing something right. I can't argue that it's worth it either. It's killing their economy. The value of the RMB is down to the point where it's more than 7 RMB to a 1 USD. It was close to 6 when I arrived in China.

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