Wednesday, 29 September 2010

China's National Day

I hear from my friends in China that they are planning holidays this weekend as it is China's National Day. It is 61 years since the forming of the People's Republic of China.  I remember last year, and I was in Australia, that there were huge festivities to celebrate the 60 years.

Only today did I think to find a video of the celebrations in Tienanmen Square, in Beijing, and saw some footage on YouTube.  I can not help but be impressed when I see the Chinese military marching and performing.  The freshmen (first year university students) do what they call "military service" for 2 - 3 weeks at the beginning of the semester.  In uniform, they march constantly in the stinking heat of summer for most of the day.  

It is strange to the foreigners that the students never discuss this.  I wonder why?  Are they sworn to secrecy about the constant marching and military discipline enforced on them during this period? Do they just think it is not interesting enough to discuss?  We always found it a little curious.

This "military" precision is obvious with some performances too - but nothing beats the thousands of soldiers performing in Tienanmen Square.  Notice how wide the roadway is and count the numbers of people in each row.  I tried, but cannot.  On one video  I think there were about thirty across, but for the big event in 2009 there were more.  50 across?  Awesome.

See the precision in this display.

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