Sunday, March 21, 2010

Yellow Dust(ed)

I went to a fabulous party this weekend, located in the Presidential Suite of the Renaissance Marriott in Seoul. Literally, it was PRESIDENTIAL--a bunch of pictures of Presidents from Guam, Indonesia, and China who had stayed in the room were up on the walls of the suite. It was HUGE and had amazing views of Gangnam from the rooftop balcony:

I was delighted the weather was so clear when I took these pictures on Sunday morning, considering that on Saturday Seoul/the 'Bu were blanketed by horrible, disgusting, lung-irritating yellow dust--reputedly the worst case of smoggy smog smog in awhile here. Though the dust is mostly attributed to desert winds blowing from the Gobi Desert (reminding me of the Harmattan winds via the Sahara in Ghana), in recent decades the dust has been a lot worse 'cause of increased levels of pollution. Just one of the suckier aspects of living in such a densely populated place--it really makes me miss clean, high, Coloradan air.


All of this delectable yellow stuff has peaked my interest in The People's Republic next door. SWEEPING SEGUE INTO EXCITING TRAVEL ANNOUNCEMENT

I found out today that I'M OFFICIALLY GOING TO CHINA!

I will be in Beijing (not Mongolia, where the dust comes from...BUMMER)from May 5th to May 10th. I'm traveling by myself and am PUMPED to have my first big solo touristy international travel experience in Beijing! My flight, hostel, and two day tours around various touristy must-dos (the Great Wall, Tiananmen Square, the Forbidden City) are booked. OH YEAH, JUST SPENDING BUTTLOADS OF WON ON COOL VACATIONS FOR MYSELF IS ALL

03/22/10 UPDATE
Time has this really cool photo essay on Beijing's yellow dust storms:
Sandstorms Hit Beijing


  1. woohoo! yay china!

    did you take that yellow dust pic? i wish i hadn't be so hungover + unable to leave my apartment/i had taken my own pics of the eerie sky. is it bad to want it to come back??

  2. Wow that yellow dust picture is epic. It didn't look that bad here... but it definitely came over the mountains like a biblical plague of locusts or something. That's exciting about China! How'd you work that out? I'm interested in finding something like that... and I'd have to go alone, because nobody has the same vacation time as me!

  3. What hostel are you staying at?

  4. Alex--I stole the dust picture. I am lame.
    Kobs--I'm staying at your hostel. Thanks for hooking me up; they have been super helpful via e-mail.
    Maggie--I used Soho Travel to book plane tickets and two day tours for when I am in Beijing. I'm staying at Sanlitun Youth Hostel, as per my friend's recommendation. I'll be "alone" in the city for three days, which I'm thinking will be really fun...but could be disastrous...we'll see. Also, we need to hang out again, soon...maybe I'll come see you in Daejeon, one of these weekends^^