September 12, 2012

South China: Wanna buy a dog… to eat?

Location: Meizhou, Fujian, China (24° 16′ 37.2″ N, 116° 6′ 57.6″ E)
Date: 22 December 2010; 3.50pm
Camera: Canon 400D with
Sigma 17-70/f2.8-4.5

It is said that the Chinese eats anything that moves. Well, that may be an exaggeration but the Chinese do actually eats a lot more living things that the normal Westerner can imagine. Animals, crustaceans, reptiles, birds and even insects are fair game. Not just meat, they consume all the different parts of an animal as well. Rhinoceros horns, bear paws, tiger bladders and bull penis are all valued for their medicinal benefits.

One of the delicacies of the Southern Chinese (Guangzhou, Fujian and Guizhou) that really gets under the skin of animal lovers is dog meat. This is a favourite dish in the winter; the meat is cooked and stewed in a casserole with various herbs. In other seasons, it is either bbq, grilled or braised. One can buy the meat fresh from the market- choose the canine that you like and it is killed, cleaned on the spot for you. These days, the dogs that are consumed are reared specially for this purpose.


September 7, 2012

Gaudi is on the mind of every tourists to Barcelona

Location: Casa Batllo, Barcelona, Spain(41° 23′ 30″ N, 2° 9′ 54″ E)
Date: 23 August 2012; 8.05pm
Camera: Canon 500D with Sigma 17-70/f2.8-4.5

Barcelona is one of the most popular destinations in Spain. The city is always bursting with tourists. Architecture is the main tourist draw in Barcelona; and it is virtually all about Gaudi. At least seven of his designs are being listed under one UNESCO Heritage Listing. Tourists to Barcelona can be seen busying themselves at the various Gaudi buildings and/or parks.

The most well-known of Gaudi’s creations has to be Sagrada Familia, the monumental and forever-unfinished cathedral; it will be the world’s largest cathedral when it is scheduled to be completed in 2026. However the most emblematic of his creations is supposedly Casa Milla (or La Pedera) with its enigmatic Star Wars’ Storm Troopers-like chimneys. However I prefers Casa Batllo to Milla because visitors can access all of the former mansion with an excellent (free) audio guide giving an excellent account of the mansion; whereas only the roof of Casa Milla is opened to visitors. Visitors have to contend with seeing models of Gaudi’s other creations as the main content of the visit (furthermore it is more expensive with extra for the audio guide).