Beijing Brave!

Five Star — By Lauren Johnson on April 5, 2011 at 12:52 pm

Okay, so Beijing is part of China and China may be part of the third world, but that doesn’t mean it is a scary, dangerous or even unclean place. In fact, what many people think of as China is an outdated, antiquated and even underrated view of what modern China is. Modern Chinese live in sky scrapers, they are whisked to work on high-speed subways and on modern buses. They work in high rises that scrape past the clouds and look down on thousands of cranes that scramble to make company for the high towers they peer out of.

They do business around the world, and across the vast expanses of China. They travel first class, in the newest planes commissioned from Boeing and operated in China. They travel on high-speed long distance trains that surpass Amtrak and EuroRail. They wear suits that are fitted, professional and modern, more modern than the grey suits many wear in the West.

Modern China is not a dangerous place. Yes, some tourists have died while on vacation in China but there is crime everywhere and these meager statistics do not stand alone. Rape rates are extremely low, murder rates are low and general petty theft is rare. Most travelers to China never encounter any problems other than hard bargainers at local markets.

Although free to marry whomever they choose, marriage markets are still common in community parks where the elderly gather to try to find a mate for their grandson or granddaughter. Still, women are liberated and free to pursue any occupation they desire. While there is the one child policy, it is understood in China as a universal good, to limit the number of people and thus preserve resources. It is not viewed as an evil.

Perceptions of China need to be modernized, to update what is thought about China based on a modern reality. The cities are flourishing, bright and bold. The countryside lags behind but is attempting to catch up. Travel nearly everywhere in the country is safe and easy, and once a traveler does visit China they get what is known as the ‘China Bug’ — a deep desire to return again and again.

Tags: China, city life, high rises, modern china, modernization, progress, reality, sky scrapers