Thursday, 24 May 2012

Sichuan, Chengdu and Chongqing

My novel starts in a small village in the province of Sichuan in Southwest China, where Shui Ying is growing up ... "Sichuan, which mean four rivers, is one of China's most populous provinces. It is one of the country's main agricultural areas for growing rice, wheat and other grains. It is home for the giant Panda bears who feed primarily on bamboo. Kung Po chicken is the best known Sichuan dish and the secret of Sichuan food is the purity of the salt collected from the mines of Zigong." When Shui Ying is born, the biggest cities in Sichuan are Chengdu and Chongqing, but after a few years Chongqing separates from Sichuan to become one of the four direct-controlled municipalities in China.  China's greatest leader in recent history is Deng Xiaoping who was born in Sichuan. He is the founding father of China's economic rise.
Welcome to Sichuan (Szechuan)

Chengdu is the capital of Sichuan province. It is one of the most important economic, transportation and communication centers in Western China. It has the most tea houses in China. Its people have a reputation in China for having a laid-back attitude and for knowing how to enjoy life.

These are the famous cute residents of the city

And these are famous places in Sichuan that appear in my novel.

The most populous city in China, and the world, is Chongqing with about 30 million people, while Shanghai and Beijing have about 20 million each.  The Beijing government "Go West" strategy is urging companies to set up operations in inland cities to prevent immigration to cities on the east coast. Chongqing is the main beneficiary of this policy.

People from Sichuan, Chengdu and Chonqing like to eat spicy food like the  Hot Pot.

Americans and Canadians wishing to try the Hot Pot in their countries,  please check the locations for:


  1. Reading your post and watching these awesome videos makes me depressed; I went to China in 2009, but the silly swine-flu pandemic was going around and I ended up quarantined in Shanghai for most of the trip. We never got to leave Shanghai. But it was so beautiful, I must go back to all the places I missed out on, and add Sichuan to the list! I don't believe it was on there (were were going from Shanghai, to Xian, to Beijing!). Your novel should make quite an interesting read if the Leshan Giant Buddha and the Bamboo Sea are to make an appearance.
    I really want to try this Chinese Hot Pot you speak of!

  2. Thanks, Bonnee, for visiting. You have many years ahead to visit China again. There's are many videos on YouTube how to make the Hot Pot. You can google for "Sichuan Restaurants" in Australia to find a few of them. And I added the website for Mongolian Hot Pot for American readers who like to try the Hot Pot in their counry.

    1. I'll definitely be keeping my eyes out for opportunities to go back to China (I'll go back many times, I hope!)and for opportunities to experience Sichuan food and Hot Pot in Australia! Hmm, I wonder if they make this stuff at China Bar (you know a Chinese restaurant in Australia is good if all the Chinese people go and eat there!).

    2. My novel is mainly in Shanghai, Sichuan, Beijing and New York City. A future post will be about Shanghai, so you might recognize places that you have seen. But there is also Australia. A famous restaurant in Shanghai, M on the Bund, was founded by Michelle Garnaut from Australia.
      In my novel Shui Ying meets Michelle in the restaurant M on the Bund and chats with her about the Shanghai Literary Festival happening every year at the restaurant. The manager of M on the Bund was kind enough to read the pages in my novel about M on the Bund and to make some corrections.

    3. Wow that's brilliant! :) I look forward to seeing more posts about your novel!

  3. We were in Sichuan and our guide gave us the option of taste testing what foods were spicy. Everyone knew which foods were, of course, but the men at the table ALL out the chilis. (The women knew better.) Every male left the table crying. My DH is lucky it didn't set off his reflux. LOL

  4. Thanks, Victoria, for visiting. It's great that you have been to Sichuan.

  5. I love how you used the links for each part of your book! So cool!

  6. Wow! Amazing video. Thanks for stopping by my blog.