The Stars Above

It was my last weekend in Beijing. There were only a couple of sights left on my list and this was my last opportunity. Unfortunately, the air quality was not in my favor. The AQI had vacillated between “Unhealthy” and “Very Unhealthy” since Friday. One could almost touch the air, it was so thick.

Azimuth Theodolite

On the daily commute, we would pass by the star-gazing equipment at the Ancient Observatory. This was my destination.

According to the brochure, the Beijing Ancient Observatory was built in 1442 during the Ming Dynasty.


As I walked around the grounds, I felt both sadness and anticipation. I would miss this city.

Sundial - Detail

I would miss its history and its splendor, but most of all I would miss my new colleagues and friends.

During those last two weeks, every time I said good-bye to someone, it was with the knowledge that I might never see them again.

Chinese Moondial

Even though my sadness was tempered with the anticipation of being home with my family and friends, it would be hard leaving.

Armilla Sphere Replica - Dragon Detail (facing right)

My only comfort was that the stars above would somehow guide us back together someday.


Zaìjiàn. 在见。

10 thoughts on “The Stars Above

  1. It’s sad to leave and perhaps never see friends again, isn’t it?
    When it happened to me, it felt like I was somehow torn apart, although always hoped to see them again
    Glad you had an amazing time there, how long did you stay?

    1. I was there for almost 6 months with breaks in between. It’s possible I will see, or at least communicate with some of my colleagues. But non-work friends are another matter. It is hard leaving such wonderful people.

  2. You were very brave to leave your family and everything familiar for this experience. What a great opportunity though. It will stay with you forever and I am sure that you will stay in the hearts and minds of your new friends. Safe home!

    1. I have a very supportive family and I missed them terribly. I am thankful to them for enabling me to take this opportunity. I hope my new friends miss me. I sure miss them!

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