Posted in China

CN-1206084: Shantou, China

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Postcrossing ID: CN-1206084
Date Sent: 6 February 2014
Date Received: 6 April 2014
Days Travelled:  59
Distance Travelled:  2,598 km 

Sometimes, I think that my local post office holds off delivery until I have several pieces of mail waiting because weeks occasionally go by without any mail and then, suddenly, there’s a stack waiting for me on the counter of my guesthouse.  Postcrossing cards tend to arrive in a batch so I often doubt whether the travel times are entirely accurate.  At any rate, on 6 April last year I received two cards – one from Krasnoyarsk, Russia, which took 50 days to arrive and this one from Shantou, Guangdong Province, China, mailed 59 days earlier.

Shantou is eastern Guangdong’s economic center – a huge city covering some 2,064 square kilometers and containing a population of more than 5.4 million people.  During the nineteenth century, it was one of the treaty ports established for Western trade and contact and one of the People’s Republic of China’s Special Economic Zones established in the 1980s.

The card itself is pre-stamped with the same image (I love these) and features one of the gates of the Cemetary of Confucius – Kong Lin – in Confucius’ hometown of Qufu, Shandong Province.  Confucius himself is buried here along with some of his disciples and the tombs of more than 100,000 of his descendants.  Construction work began on the main wall and gate surrounding the cemetery in 1331 and it has undergone thirteen renovations and extensions.  It received serious damage in November 1966 when it was vandalized by a team of Red Guards during the Cultural Revolution.   It has been a UNESCO World Heritage Site, along with the Temple of Confucius and the Kong Family Mansion, since 1994.

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