Sichuan Journey

I’m reading a travelogue written by Chicago Tribune reporter Evan Osnos about his journey from Chongqing, China into Sichuan Province. He is traveling via foot as much as possible, through smaller cities where tourists don’t generally go. There are photos and videos accompanying the posts, as well.
Of course, living in a “small” city myself, I can relate to his observations.

BTW – a while ago I posted about the apartment the DH and I live in. Recently I confirmed that the yearly rent for it is…. 8000RMB per year. That’s right! For an 8 bedroom, two story apartment our company pays $1026 per year. I also learned that to buy a new two or three bedroom apartment in our city, you will pay about $30,000. Our friends recently looked at a 70 year old stone cottage in the nearby countryside. The asking price was $2000. Unreal!


5 Responses to “Sichuan Journey”

  1. Jeff Says:

    Hey GG,

    Email me if you can, quick prop for you.



  2. Megan Says:

    You officially have my apartment envy. We’re gearing up for a delegation in Changchun and one of the sticky points is the apartment. Rent for foreigners seems to be astronomical. During our ‘go and see’ trip we toured a few examples of what would be in our price range. Normal three bedroom apartment in a medium to upscale compound: 1200 euros a month. And this with water stains and rusty broken stairs in the hallway, cracked sidewalks and exterior walls with peeling paint.

    I admit I was expecting something more like your apartment, instead I feel like we’re taking our Munich real estate market with us.

  3. global gal Says:

    WOW! I can’t believe those prices! On Chinese standards, the city of Linyi is considered a very small city. There are very few foreigners here. Until recently, there was no such thing as medium to upscale living accommodations. Now, there are quite a few. There is even one area of the city where we probably couldn’t afford to live.

    Our complex is “across the river” in a poorer, more rural area. There is nothing luxurious about our complex! Especially if you consider the stream of black water and trash the flows right beside it. However, our apartment is reasonably nice and could be awesome if it were customized and fixed up. Still, there are lots of cracks in the plaster, strange smells from the drains, leaking windows, rusty balcony banisters, dirty stairwells, etc.

    Do you suppose you are just getting the foreigner rate? In our first city in China, we were often told that we should just live in a hotel and not look for an apartment because it was “dangerous” for foreigners to live in normal apartments. The locals might rob them. I thought that was ridiculous, and now that I live among the locals, I find it absurd.

    You have my apartment sympathies… 🙂

  4. Josh Says:

    Here in Qingdao, we pay RMB 3000 per month for a two-bedroom, garden apartment.

  5. global gal Says:

    Hi Josh, 3000RMB doesn’t seem too bad for Qingdao, Qingdao being like “civilization” compared to little old Linyi. Is that furnished? “Garden apartment” makes me think it must be really nice. I want a garden apartment!

    What has shocked me the most is a friend’s 3 bedroom apartment, brand new, unfurnished, on the very edge of town (requiring a car or motorbike) where rent was 150RMB per month!

    When I think that I lived in downtown Toronto paying $1200 a month for a little one bedroom, I realize I can probably never go back…

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