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Thread: MerDragon China Rally 2010

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    NaP^TuNe
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    This granny's underwear is so eye-catching I couldn't resist taking a snap at it...



    But still, the winner of the day is still this T-shirt on sale at one of the souvenir shops...


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    It was a quick tour of the Hutong and we had Peking Duck for dinner.


    The restaurant is called Quan Ju De. However, it sounds more like "Quan Ji De", which means "All Remember" in mandarin.


    Before we enter the restaurant, we saw a lady pushing a cart of roasted ducks packed in plastic bags. I think those are for delivery.




    Great tasting Peking duck, cripsy skin and juicy meat...

     

     
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    The guys at my table can drink beer like water. Someone ordered 5 bottles of beer for everyone and then someone else repaid the kindness by ordering another 5 bottles and this sort of habit somehow started on the first day of the trip and went on for the rest of the trip...






    Did i mention i don't drink beer? The above has nothing to do with me.

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    Night time back at the hotel, I went to check my bike again. I notice a bike at the far end that looks like a Ducati. Went near it and it was a Ducati 1198s!






    I was excited to see a fellow Duke in Beijing.

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    I got to know a few Ducati riders in Beijing. Ducati bikes are very expensive & rare in China. In fact, Ducati only started a shop in Beijing a couple of years ago. Getting a Duke in China would be more expensive than getting one in Singapore. I am very honored to have met the riders. They came down to my hotel to support me.

    You will notice that all the big bikes have no number plate. There's a no logic rule in China, all privately owned motorcycles above 400cc will not be given a number plate. It will not be registered. Because the traffic police's motorcycle is at most 400cc. The common citizen cannot be more "powerful" than the authorities. So, all these big bikes are actually "illegal". However, I was told the local police don't give a **** when they see these bikes on the road. They cannot catch up the speed anyway.

    And Gerard the 1198s owner tells me he doesn't even have a riding license...

    Here is how the traffic police bike looks like in China. This is a 200cc one. There's a bigger (biggest) one with 400cc.





    From left to right: Jack Tan, Gerard (Black 1198s), Me, Shang Dong (999) & Leslie (Paul Smart 1000).


    Leslie's Paul Smart 1000 & Shang Dong's 999.









    Shang Dong on his 999.
    Last edited by NaP^TuNe; 30-08-2010 at 02:30 PM.

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    10th of Aug

    The main group went to the Forbidden City & Great Wall. I have been to those places so I didn't join the group. I went to the Olympic Stadium aka "Bird Nest" instead. It has been 2 years since the 2008 Beijing Olympics, yet, the spirit is still strong lingering in the Olympic Park. Alot of visitors, like me, just go there to see the stadium, although there is nothing going on at that area.






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    A map of the Olympic Park.


    This is the Ling Long Pagoda.


    The National Aquatics Center where swimming competitions were held.


    The Olympic Indoor Stadium.



    The lights around the Olympic Park are also shaped like the "Bird Nest".
    Last edited by NaP^TuNe; 28-08-2010 at 04:36 PM.

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    The wide and busy highways of Beijing.







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    i am inclined to think that the "torn" area of the kid's shorts was meant for him to sh1t easily.

    Am i right to assume that?

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    Quote Originally Posted by papabread79 View Post
    i am inclined to think that the "torn" area of the kid's shorts was meant for him to sh1t easily.

    Am i right to assume that?
    Yes, the "torn' area stretches from the back to the front. Its for peeing & sh1tting. Its very common for kids in China to wear this.

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    It was a very hot & sunny day at the Olympic Park. I saw the stadium, I am contented. So much about the legacy of it. I left the park and went to...


    Wang Fu Jing is the Orchard Road of Beijing. Malls & malls of endless shops and great buys.




     

     
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    At night around 8pm plus, I received a call from the group leader that there will be a pump petrol session around 10pm. The next morning will be the offical flag-off ride. And we will be heading straight up the highways without stopping for petrol. So i took a taxi back to the hotel.

    Below are pictures of our bikes drinking China petrol - Sinopec for the first time..






    This is Li from Canada. She rides a Kawasaki Er-6n, 650cc.


    Li & her husband Richard each rode their own bike on this trip. Richard rides a BMW (what model I am not sure). They've rode together on many trips in different parts of the world. Such a loving couple.

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    11th Aug 7.30am

    Getting ready for the flag-off ride. We have a coach bus carrying non-riding passengers, so all our luggage are on the bus. We only take what we need on the road with us.



    We were each given a Provisional Driving/Riding Permit by the China authorities. Due to case-sensitivity, we are not allowed to post photos with contents about the permit/license. This 2-piece card size license was so important to the China authorities that they demanded the return of it before we left the country. Alot of us wanted to keep it as a souvenir, we tried persuading the authories but we got a firm "NO".


    Everyone took turns to receive the license given by the authority representative.


    Mark seemed so happy when he got his.


    The whole family.


    One of our rider by the name Chandler Thomas Willian is a priest. He said prayers for us after the group photo taking. Our roadtrip is non-religion based but we all gladly asked for God's protection & received the lord's blessings.


    Team 27 president-Peter Poh gave us a briefing on what to look out for on China roads.

    And... Off we went!

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    11th Aug - Beijing --> Changzhou (lunch) --> Dezhou
    Total 390km. We spent 8 & a half hour. Our maximum speed allowed on all roads are 80~ 90km/h. It was raining and now that I recall, it was the coldest ride of the whole trip.





    There is a total of 3 female riders. I made friends with the other 2.


    Left to right: Sannnaess Siri, Me and Li.




    Sannaess Siri with her Harley. She joined the trip with her husband. They both rode the same bike model and even with matching colour.

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    Nelson and his FJR.




    We left Beijing Shi and headed into Hebei Province. We stopped for a break after the first tow station named Da Yang Fang Station.


    We stopped at the pitstop.

    Last edited by NaP^TuNe; 30-08-2010 at 04:07 PM.

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    The above picture of Jack on his Harley is so rock & roll~~


    How do I look then?



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    Above is Kelvin, our lead bike in the convoy. He had a video camera on his helmet.

    Here's a video of our very first ride in Beijing.
    Last edited by NaP^TuNe; 04-09-2010 at 07:52 PM.

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    lifes too short and can be ended any time. my wife and i changed our budget formula and increase $$ for play. in our 40s, we lost a few friends thru illness and accidents. this phase changed our thinking. My wife could not come due to young kids, but next time, she would.

    i will be selling off the fazer in a few months time and am looking at a BMW tourer. Anyone selling?
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    Quote Originally Posted by terri_one View Post
    i will be selling off the fazer in a few months time and am looking at a BMW tourer. Anyone selling?
    Eh bro, want to buy or sell bike go to "Garage Sale" section lah... This thread is for me to BLAST my photos..

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    It was a very cold ride. I am all wet because my riding gears are all non-waterproof. Finally, after 5 hours at 1pm, we stopped at Cangzhou for lunch.



    Our bikes rocked the neighbourhood...




    The police is suppose to look after our bikes, end up he was taking pictures of our bikes... Might as well get him to take a picture with me..

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    After lunch, we're back on the road!


    We entered ShanDong Province. Our toll fees are firstly paid by the leading van infront of the convoy, then collected from us during the end of each day.





    Yaya, the above looks like an advertisment for riding jackets...

     

     
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    4.40pm, we arrived at a small town named Dezhou, our 2nd hotel - FengDu International Hotel. It's just a one night stop-over as the next morning we will be riding again.







    Dinner at the hotel. Every meal we had in China was BIG fish, BIG meat, BIG BIG serving. We had sumptuous feast for lunch & dinner throughout. Towards the end of the trip, I got sooooo sick of chinese cuisine. I went to eat McDonald's & KFC.


    Above is Albert- the debt collector "Ah Long San" who comes chasing us for toll & petrol payment.


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    12th Aug, 7.45am.
    Dezhou ----> Jinan (Main city of ShanDong Province)
    117km, 4 hours.


    Ironed-on patch on one of the rider's jacket. The countries that we've ridden in.

    A Harley Davidson ridden by a participant name Richard Alan started giving problems. His alternator is not charging the battery. The bike cannot start so the guys tried to charge it using cables connecting to another bike.



    And when it still fails, they tried charging with a car.



    This is only the 2nd day of riding. His bike continued to give him problem every riding day. He was very unhappy. His bike managed to start and we moved off for Jinan!


    Last edited by NaP^TuNe; 30-08-2010 at 05:12 PM.

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    Below are my favourite set of pictures in the whole trip. Taken at a petrol station in Dezhou on our way to Jinan. Pictures taken by H.M our trip photographer. It was one of the best ride during the trip. The weather was cooling & the skies were clear.







    These pictures are worth me paying almost $8000 to join the trip. It is an almost impossible trip and these pictures are priceless...

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    The locals were very curious about us & our bikes. They stood around looking/staring at us from the beginning to the end. Some will come forward to ask questions.

    Where are you from? What are you doing here? Where are you going? What bike is this? How much it costs? Can it go 180km/h? Is anyone riding a Ferrari? Oh, Ferrari got no bike?


    See, the people are just standing around looking at us.

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    Richard's Harley refuses to start again... It almost went up the tow truck. If it goes up the truck, Richard would have to sit in the coach bus. After awhile, the bike managed to start again and Richard wishes to ride it. Of course that would be his choice, considering having paid so much for the trip.


    Above: Albert the debt collector on his Harley and his new "boyfriend" (Ah Poh). Some people are upset over bike giving problems... While some people are happy making gay friends along the trip...

    On the road again!




    We went past rice fields...

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    My bike is so dirty!!!! We went past a stretch of road where it was wet and muddy. We later on realised it wasn't mud at all. We past a cement factory and those were cement stuck on our bikes! Check below:


    Cement splashed all over the inner parts of my bike. It will eat into the paint and parts if I don't wash it soon.


    Jinan Yellow River Bridge Toll Station.


    Jinan Huangtai Hotel. Our 3rd hotel. We arrived around 12pm. It took us 4 hours to get here from Dezhou.


    Shack... Waiting for room keys distribution at the hotel lobby.

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    We will be staying in Jinan for 2 nights. The next day 13th is a no ride day. After showering myself, I showered my bike. The main group went off for some hotspring sight-seeing tour. I didn't join them. I have been to three quarters of China and seen most of the famous sights. Back in 2005, I backpacked alone and toured China for 2 months. I was tired from all the riding so I decided to wash my bike, then go and sleep. Some guys stayed back with me to wash their bikes too. Some of them claim they are bikers, NOT tourists...





    This is Neil from UK. He rides a Honda Varadero. Sometimes I ride behind him in the convoy, he always points out to the rider behind to look out for potholes and rocks.


    We washed our bikes infront of the hotel using the hotel's tap. I am surprised the hotel actually allowed us to do that. The local people started to crowd around and watched.





    Finally bike is clean! Parked one side show-off.
    Last edited by NaP^TuNe; 30-08-2010 at 08:03 PM.

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    The guys who came back from the sight-seeing tour gave me the pictures below. So this is what they were up to...





    HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA.........

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    Unwanted pregnancy, head down to Quan Chen hospital.

    In China, thanks to their exploding population, they practise strict birth control. Every couple can only have 1 child. If you are a farmer or peasant, you will be allowed a 2nd child provided your first child happens to be a daughter. If first child is a son, then it shall stop there.

    I have a china friend who told me that if a women is caught carrying a 2nd child, the authorities would literally catch the women and send her for an abortion. But if the women manages to secretly keep the child till its almost time for birth, the authorities will allow the child to be born . Following a heavy fine.

    Abortion advertisments can be seen everywhere at the bus stops, subway trains, billboard advertisment and tv... Its very common. And condom vending machines are everywhere. See below.



    Condom vending machines!~
    Last edited by NaP^TuNe; 01-09-2010 at 03:37 PM.

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    I took this pic becos i saw that the man was more interested in seeing you at different angles (if you know what i mean) than checking out the bike. it was fun watching him in action.


    Quote Originally Posted by NaP^TuNe View Post


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    Quote Originally Posted by terri_one View Post
    I took this pic becos i saw that the man was more interested in seeing you at different angles (if you know what i mean) than checking out the bike. it was fun watching him in action.
    I was wearing a t-shirt so he's not going to get any "free show". Heng ah...

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    After washing my bike, I went back and slept for a few hours. I don't even remember falling asleep, that was how tired I am.

    Dinner later that day:


    Xi Bei Jiao Zi Chen. Northwestern Dumpling Restaurant.


    The restaurant does not have a booklet menu. The menu is a walk-in row of pictures showing the type of dishes they have.


    There's a wet piece of paper inside the ash tray that says "Smoking is bad for your health". Heck, this only happens in tourist's restaurant. Their local people smoke like nobody's business, they don't give a **** about you having bad or no bad health.


    Every meal... BIG Fish, Big Meat...


    This is the best they could do when we asked for chilli. This is no chilli?! This is green bell peppers. We asked for chilli, they say there's no red chilli, only green ones. And this is what we got. In ShanDong Province, you can't find spicy food nor hot chilli. They don't eat that.

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    13th Aug (Friday the 13th...)
    A free day in Jinan, no ride day.


    Quan Chen Guang Chang. It means Quan Chen Square. Something like our Raffles Place area, office, malls, restaurants...





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    I always enjoy taking pictures of children and plants...







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    Silver Plaza Mall, one of the most up-market shopping mall that sells goods from international brands.


    Some of them went for chinese "massage"...

    By the end of 13th, we were 6 days into our trip already. Time seems to pass quickily when we are enjoying. We gradually got to know one another better.

    Day 7, 14th Aug. 8am.
    Jinan ----> Tai An, 88km, 2hrs.


    The two chinese boys next to me are the only "eye-candy" during the trip. Young, cute and the one on my right speaks English with an american accent. I forgot their names. They are a pair of brothers helping us with logistics along the trip.


    Eng Chye (BMW GS1200) & Me. A happy-go-lucky guy whom I've rode to Thailand with. He's quite into long-distance riding. So am I.


    It was pouring but the rain stopped just before we left.


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    Leaving Jinan for Tai An~~

    Below is a video taken on one of our rides. Watch it and see how the chinese police "work". I do not wish to comment more but watch closely what happens when our black van (our tour guide) stopped next to the police car. Part of our trip fees goes into "that".




    It was just a short 2hrs ride to our hotel in Tai An.
    Last edited by NaP^TuNe; 04-09-2010 at 08:01 PM.

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    nice experience that you have got from this trip. saw the video of you riding through the bumpy road towards Nan Jing. should be a memorable 1 for you i suppose. glad that all have enjoyed the trip. hopefully i will be able to join in someday. so you going for the 3NCR as well?
    Signalling saves life!
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    It's not what you ride, it's how you ride

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    got this from my FB. i like this one. this is funny...what u doing ahh? hahahaaa.....lol.
    Attached Images Attached Images
    Last edited by ah_veo; 03-09-2010 at 01:39 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by StEeL View Post
    nice experience that you have got from this trip. saw the video of you riding through the bumpy road towards Nan Jing. should be a memorable 1 for you i suppose. glad that all have enjoyed the trip. hopefully i will be able to join in someday. so you going for the 3NCR as well?
    Is this Darryl? Yes, I've signed up for 3NCR and also going to Koh Samui after the event. I BLOODY LOVE long-distance riding... Hahaha!~~

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    Quote Originally Posted by ah_veo View Post
    got this from my FB. i like this one. this is funny...what u doing ahh? hahahaaa.....lol.
    I was worshipping my bike. And the other fellow is hugging my bike. I shall go into explaining why we did that in the later part of my photo sharing..

    I've been uploading too slow yeah i know... sorry... I am too busy these days.

     

     
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    We stayed 1 day in Tai An. Our main purpose is to visit Mountain Tai.

    Mt. Tai Shan
    The leader of the 'Five Sacred Mountains', located in the center of Shandong Province, lying across the cities of Tai An. Here we go!



    We queue up and took a bus up to the mountain's cable car station.


    Left to right: Me, Kelvin (my videos are by him) & William.


    The carvings on the stone say" We are more than happy to welcome friends from afar", and there goes Richard sitting beside it.


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    Seems like I'm not short enough to get a free ride...




    We came up to the top, the station's name is Nan Tian Men Station.
    Last edited by NaP^TuNe; 03-09-2010 at 06:35 PM.

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    You gotta give it to the mainlanders for their translation skills.

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    Every lock symbolises a wish for good-luck or good-health or good-love... So you actually buy a lock, pray to the gods, make a wish and lock it there.


    There happened to be a fight among the locals. Over ice-cream... Bunch of idiots...





    Last edited by NaP^TuNe; 03-09-2010 at 06:24 PM.

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    Yeah it looks abit like Great Wall, but it's Tai Shan.




    The different routes to go different attractions on the top.


    A hotel at the top of the mountain for catching sunrise in the morning.


    If you look what's behind me, you can see a sign saying the hotel name is "81 Motel". Hotel 81 chain on the top of Mount Tai???
    Last edited by NaP^TuNe; 03-09-2010 at 06:26 PM.

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    The peak of the mountain is called Yu Huang Ding.


    It says we're 1510 metres above sea level.



    Taken from the peak of Tai Shan.

    Last edited by NaP^TuNe; 03-09-2010 at 06:33 PM.

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    So we've seen Tai Shan. To be honest I was disappointed, its nothing spectacular. The Huang Shan (Yellow Mountains) in AnHui Province is so much better. When we decided to decent the mountain, we realised the cable car queue is soooo long! Check out the pic below!



    It took us 1 hour to get to our turn.




    A dam on the mountain.

    It was around 6.15pm when we decended the mountain and we caught sunset in the cable car.



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