BootsnAll Travel Network

Articles Tagged ‘1’

More articles about ‘1’
« Home

In search of a Home Security System

Monday, January 25th, 2010

Recently, we have a closed friend in California who just bought a lovely house in suburban of Los Angeles and we were chatting about the neighborhood security issue. She wanted to find a burglar alarm system for the new home. Since we have the experience of being broken into our car and stolen a car audio system when we lived in Mountain View, California, we understand the concern and needs. So I do some Googling for her as well as for myself to learn more about this area.

My goal is to find a national company that have branch or support in California, and when searching for “home security system”, I got a system call “ADT” which is an award winning home security system and has a broad range of products & services for home or business. Looks good. So I search more using words like  ADT in California and ADT in CA and found a website call  In this site, I learn that one of the benefit of having a home security system is that the home insurance premier can be reduced up to 20%. It sounds like a win-win solution: reduce cost and get protection.

I shared this information with my friend and she also thinks ADT is a pretty good products. They offer:  24-Hour Alarm Monitoring and money-back, theft protection and movers’ security guarantee.  I like the “movers’ security” guarantee especially as we are not adversed to move if work opportunites are good. ADT has a big service network covering the country. I tried “ADT in Florida“, “ADT in FL” and found quite some results as well.

However, this is just my research online and I don’t have any usage experience of such kind of system. Dear readers, would you recommend this brand?

Happy International Children’s Day, 儿童节快乐!

Monday, June 1st, 2009


You are 16 weeks’ old today on International Children’s Day June 1st. Mommy and Daddy  wish you a happy holiday, your first Chilren’s Day!

We have been so proud of you seeing you learning new things every day. We are so happy every moment with you. You smile, we laugh; you cry, we worry.  We hope you can grow up freely, try out new things bravely and pusuit whatever you are passionated about without hesitation.

Zijin, happy holiday! and kids around the worlds, wish you all a happy holiday!

Shanghai Oriental Art Center tour

Sunday, December 21st, 2008

We went to see a ballet show <Swan Lake> last Friday as an activity to celebrate my birthday. The venue is in Shanghai Orienal Art Center (东方艺术中心) in Pudong, Shanghai. This butterfly-shaped architectural artistry is among China’s most important performance venues.(See the brilliant photo below. Photo courtesy to jordipostales.)Shanghai Oriental Art Center

The art center in day light.

It is designed by architect Paul Andreu of Paris who has created a building that is “bright and transparent as if by magic” in the words of the architect. The complex encompasses three venues: a 1,979-seat philharmonic orchestra hall, a 1,054-seat lyric theatre, and a 330-seat chamber music hall. It also features ancillary public facilities such as an exhibition hall, music shops, a restaurant and an arts library, as well as a multimedia and training centre. (source here.)

Here is the photo tour of my night:

Shanghai Oriental Art Center exterior

Shanghai Oriental Art Center front

Swan Lake poster at Shanghai Oriental Art Center

Shanghai Oriental Art Center inside

p1010021.JPG   p1010022.JPG  p1010025.JPG


The performers are from Russian National Ballet Theater. It is my first time to see a formal ballet performance and the performance definitely gave us a delightful and pleasant night. I was amazed by the scene/stage design – so beautiful that I can’t believe my eyes.

How to Get There (by Metro): Line 2 Shanghai Science & Technology Museum  Station

A Day Trip to Suzhou- “East Venice”

Friday, May 9th, 2008

As planed, we went to Suzhou, Jiangsu province last Sat. We took a 8:58 am bullet train, China Highspeed Railway (CHR) at Shanghai Railway Station and arrived at Suzhou in 40 minutes. It stopped at Kushan (昆山) for 2 minutes. The bullet train is the best option to travel between Shanghai and Suzhou: 26RMB/person, safe, fast and reliable schedule (no traffic jam).

I’ve been to Suzhou once 8 years’ before. In my memory, it is a lovely small city. I had a great time walking around from one garden to the other.

But this time when we walked out of the Suzhou train station, it took us around 30 mintues to figur out where to take a taxi or a bus. Taxi drivers refused to take us to nearby place, and finally we were in a bus but the route on the map is not correct and we got off the wrong station and had to take a 3-wheel bike. At around 11am, we arrived at The Humble Administrator Garden (拙政园) historial street. Suzhou Museum, Lion Forest Garden (狮子园) and Humble Administrator Garden are in this neighbouhood.

Suzhou Museum, 苏州博物馆We started from the new wing of Suzhou Museum, which is designed by Guangzhou born American Chinese architect Ieoh Ming Pei. Mr. I. M. Pei spent a few years of his childhood in his family’s estate, the Lion Forest Garden in Suzhou, now a World Heritage Site. Suzhou Museum is the second architecture designed by I.M. Pei in Mainland China besides of Fragrant Hill Hotel (香山饭店),a four star hotel in Fragrant Hill in Beijing. I was attracted by the big name of Pei and visited (took a look) Fragrant Hill Hotel (香山饭店) in 2000 when I was a student. I didn’t have the “wow” feeling at the design but I bet it to be a nice place to stay for leisure and relaxing. The other mater piece by I. M. Pei I desire to visit is the Pyramids of the Louvre, in Paris.

Fragrant Hill Hotel (香山�店)

A quick image tour of Suzhou Museum:

Suzhou Museum, 苏州博物馆

from the outter garden, the building is the entrance main hall.

Suzhou Museum, 苏州博物馆

The interior garden, the building is the back of the main hall.

Suzhou Museum, 苏州博物馆

A modernlized “art of the window”. In Classical Gardens of Suzhou, there are always a scenery out of the each window. Typical scenery elements include: a Taihu stone, some bamboom, a small pond, a tree, a Chinese orchid, etc.

Suzhou Museum, 苏州博物馆

In the hallway.

Suzhou Museum, 苏州博物馆

A modernlized and abstracted version of “Fake Hills”(假山). The traditional “Fake Hills” are made of stones from TaiHu Lake. The natural shape of the stone insprite people’s imaginary. Lion Forest Garden is famous for the thousands of “lion-shape” like stones.

Similar to Fragrant Hill Hotel, the Suzhou Museum adopts the typical colors of the whitewashed plaster wall, and te dark gray clay tile as primary colors. These are the color you will see in Suzhou city. I like the modern design, but not really the whitewashed palster wall. Why? It is too difficult to maintain. The museum is less than 2 years’ old but I can see the rain washed stains on the wall. The air condition is just not good. But the facilities inside the museum are world class, except the descriptions on the exhibits are too short, only titles.

The other wing of the musuem is Prince Zhong’s Masion, originally a part of the Humble Administrator Garden. It is a fun exeperience to walk through a door and go back to several hundred years’ ago. Strongly recommend if you want to see something different in Suzhou.


We spent about 2 hours in the museum (20RMB) and went to a nearby restaurant called Wumen People (吴门人家, 苏州平江区潘儒巷31号), a top 3 reviewed restaurant in

Tiger Hill

In the afternoon, we visited Tiger Hill (虎丘). Tiger Hill is famous for a mystery of a tomb of King of Wu (AC 514-496). The park is in the northwest edge of old Suzhou city, but keep in mind that Suzhou is small and it only took us less than 20 RMB to get there from the museum in the east of Suzou. Visiting Tiger Hill in a national holiday was a disaster: too croweded. So my good impression on Tiger Hill was gone.

Tiger Hill Suzhou

I adore this! It was written by a calligraphy master named Yan Zhenqinq (颜真卿) (AC 709- 785) in Tang Dynasty. In fact, only “剑池“ are original, “虎丘” were rewritten by Zhang Zhongyu (章仲玉) in Ming Dynasty. It is said the the tomb of King Wu is under the cliff befine the sign. (60 RMB/person, free audio guide with 400 RMB deposit, 2-3 hours)

Canals of Old Suzhou

Good news.: one big change of Suzhou since my last visit is the improvement of water quality in the canals. Suzhou was described as Venice of The East (v.s. the west Venice in Italy) by Marco Polo in 1276. Today, the interconnected system of water of 2500 years’ history is back to work and green again.  48 points of interests are linked and accessible by water, including ancient city gates, bridges and gardens. A way to see the city but avoid the crowds and traffic. We visited a friend at his condo where a cannal/river is running next to his back yard.  As a proud Suzhou resident, he kept encouraging us to move to Suzhou!

 Dream Vacation?

I would love to visit Venice of Italy and Amsterdam of Netherlands to see the “water city” of West.