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Early Morning Ride

Updated on November 26, 2010
Village under the shadow of Da Yu
Village under the shadow of Da Yu
Early morning on the canal - washing
Early morning on the canal - washing
Along the canal
Along the canal
Another view with fishing platform on the right.  The Chinese men love to fish.
Another view with fishing platform on the right. The Chinese men love to fish.
Boats and flotsam in the canal.  (It is summer - there are a lot of water weeds growing on the surface of the water.)
Boats and flotsam in the canal. (It is summer - there are a lot of water weeds growing on the surface of the water.)
Gardens - where folk grow vegetables for home and to eke out a small income.
Gardens - where folk grow vegetables for home and to eke out a small income.
Once there was a hill here - this area near the famed East Lake was mined for its rock.
Once there was a hill here - this area near the famed East Lake was mined for its rock.
An early summer lotus bud.
An early summer lotus bud.
Carrying bamboo on a bicycle.
Carrying bamboo on a bicycle.
Carrying bamboo on a bicycle.
Carrying bamboo on a bicycle.

Early morning ride

I had planned to go on the other side of the ring road on my e-bike and with my camera, but I found it hard to find the right day. If I had the time, the weather was bad, until Saturday June 19th. I set off around 7 am, with my camera in the little basket attached to the handle bars, quickly road through the campus and out of the South Gate and onto the ring road.

Even at this time of the day the roads are busy and as I pedalled or powered along the roadway for bicycles, there was heavy traffic on that road and the main road with huge trucks vying for space on the road tooting as they passed the smaller vehicles.

On a Saturday the workers still go to work as many would work six or seven days per week, and as 8 am is a common starting time hence the numbers on the road. I stop every few hundred meters to get the camera out, so I have to be especially careful. Sometimes the riders will toot their horns to warn me of the approach, but often they are silent and I have to be very alert. Keep to the right, keep to the right, ride in a straight line......

In a city with several thousand bridges there is a lot of water, and I like capturing the reflections on the still early morning rivers or canals.

Many women were going to or returning from the canals with their bicycles or motor scooters packed with plastic buckets and clothes - wet if they have already been, and packed in plastic bags if they were headed to the big "washroom" on the canal. I still find it hard to understand why so many homes do not have running water, and why so many women must do their washing in this way.

Many farm workers head out to work with a simple hoe balanced on a shoulder. Some would ride, and one man I saw on the return trip was trying to carry a large collection of smallish bamboo poles on his bicycle. I'd stopped at a bridge to take a photo when I saw him riding with this enormous collection of poles and he dropped them. If I hadn't stopped, I may have been hit by the falling bamboo.

There's been a lot of rain, and the trees, gardens and grass are bright green and so refreshing to look at, and some of the gardens so spectacular that I have to contemplate the contrasts in this country. So much money spent on gardens, when so many people live without some basic necessities like water and sewerage.




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