Thursday, December 4, 2008

Snow in Asia

Yesterday night there was a light snow falling after we left the office. It was very cold and I was not used to it. I regretted that I did not bring more winter clothes. But the jacket, gloves and cap was enough to give me some warmth. We walked near the hotel to the famous street with department stores. We walked under the falling snow and found a food center that I used to go to in my past trips several years ago. I thought it closed down when I last walked these streets on my return a few months back.

I tried to buy the dumplings that I loved but they were not selling any. So we bought honeyed pork and rice and drunk the local snow beer. We talked about the economy and the coming recession. Everybody seems to be talking about the hardships ahead and the possible lay-offs or forced vacations. My colleague was saying that he may go on forced leave once the budget cuts are forced through. But despite the gloomy talks I feel a strange optimism. Strange because we have now started to receive mails on the stoppage of projects if they have not crossed the preliminary milestones.

The training for the past few days were good. I think the users now understand the application better. With the budget cuts and the project stoppages, the timing for the training was good. Otherwise, we may not have continued because we will be asked to postpone. Not it seems that it was a stoke of wise insight. I am glad to have pushed it and planned for my friend to come over from Europe. I may not see him again for a long time. The recession will be deep in Europe but I think will be short lived in the USA. I have this faith and optimism on the new administration that may be strangely unwarranted.

This morning it was lovely to see the snow on the trees across the hotel. It was also refreshing to see the snow on the cars, rooftops and sidewalks. It only snowed for a while last night so the city was not engulfed unlike in my past trips long ago. I always liked the snow in China because it is like another world. It's like snow in China or Japan or Korea is enough to elevate it into world ranks. Other Asian countries will never rise up because of the absence of snow. Perhaps snow gives a certain hardness and perspective to it's inhabitants.

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