Friday, August 8, 2008


Today is 8-8-08, the beginning of the Olympic Games in Beijing, China.

They say the date has to do with 8 being a lucky number in Chinese tradition...that's all well and good, but I have my own theory. After all, some countries write dates in month-day-year format, and others use day-month-year if one chooses the date of 8-8, well, there's no confusion, and everybody shows up on the right day, no matter where they're from!

(these characters are the mascots of the Olympics)

My in laws are in Beijing right now teaching English at a women's college (and also working with humanitarian projects doing things like delivering wheelchairs and building school libraries). They are working as volunteers in the Olympic village--I believe they said they're working at the water polo venue, probably doing all of the non-glamorous things like sweeping and cleaning bathrooms. But they are THERE!
They said that Beijing is a dirty polluted city, but that in the year they have been there, they have seen an amazing transformation--the government has put millions of dollars into beautifying Beijing, including such drastic measures as planting fully grown trees along major streets! My in laws (who are certified master gardeners) commented that the trees were too large to transplant and probably will die next year...but hey, it looks good for now!

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