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  • Lobby of government-run hotel in Beijing shows a glimpse of typically big buildings with wide spaces.

  • In a community center, women dance to keep fit and keep from getting bored.

  • Sarah Mirasol and Armi Corpuz, lawyers, are dwarfed by carved chair.

  • Senator Cynthia Villar tours CRRC plant that manufactures high-speed trains for the world.

  • Visitors from the Philippines’ House of Representatives: Alberto Ungab, Ping Amante, Henry Oaminal, Mark Go, Salvio Fortuno in Human province with 20something son (in denims) of owner of a farm-tourism facility.

  • Peking duck, anyone? In Beijing, no less.

    Text & Photos by JULLIE Y. DAZA

    Not quite a superpower yet, China is in a big hurry to wipe out poverty by the next decade in preparation for its drive to become a thoroughly modern state beginning in the year 2050, 100 years after the birth of the People’s Republic of China.

    Millions of Chinese are multimillionaires and self-made tycoons who have thrived under the give-and-take of capitalism even as communism remains the mighty bond that holds together society, government, and the military. It’s the China that wears the face of high-end technology, creative engineering, rapid industrialization, and science as the handmaiden of agriculture. The one-child policy has been relaxed after 30 years. As a consequence of that strict policy, it is seen that by 2030, 30 million Chinese bachelors will be without brides. Not that the women are eager to get married. Like their sisters in other Asian countries, working girls in the cities are more eager to keep their job than be tied down to a grumpy husband.

    Some things are hard to change. In the thick of the race to attain ultra-modernization, the China that tourists visit—or revisit—is no different than any other attractive destination, one that offers the little pleasures, comforts and conveniences that life provides, at home or in a strange country.

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