beijing natives – 北京土著

Beijing is changing, Beijing is gone, Beijing will never be the same again.

It’s only been a year since I arrived in Beijing. I only know what I know, the Beijing of today which has catapaulted itself into an Olympic city. Even the city that I know now is very different from the city I came to only a year ago. It’s hard for me to feel nostalgia for a place that I’ve only lived in for a year, but what I do miss in Beijing is the many layers of street life. It’s all gone now, cleaned up for the Olympics in the new and shiny Beijing. Who is to say that it will ever return?

This wonderful Flash animation–which is much better than the original music video–of a song by Zhang Bohong (张伯宏) captures the quickly disappearing aspects of Beijing’s ordinary day-to-day life.  From the vendors selling slices of watermelon to drinking in the hutongs, the old grandfathers and grandmothers walking in the park to one kuai bowls of tofu, it’s the Beijing that is gone.

But you will never miss what you don’t know.

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2 Comments on "beijing natives – 北京土著"

  1. Jetso
    12/08/2008 at 10:24 pm Permalink

    Traditional walks of life & daily routines always have a remarkable manner of resurfacing in different forms & ways …

    As for the 1 kuai noodles & tofu, well, those are definitely gone for good in our lifetime.


  1. [...] has changed in Beijing during the capital’s preparations to host the Olympic Games. This cute animated video is a ...

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