In the Service of Spring
Owing to some unfathomable power of our existence the spring season in Beijing last shorter than in a number of Western countries, therefore there are but a few moments to enjoy the earth covered in the innocent colors of the fresh bloom, before it gets too hot to enjoy the beauty of the outdoor world and all the signs sent by the environment strongly suggest that the sun will finally devour this undeserving planet.
With spring bursting to life from even the remotest corners, park-like campuses of some bigger Beijing's universities in kind of Tsinghua and Beida often turn into popular sighting spots, with flocks of people mercilessly taking into the possession places otherwise (at least in theory) serving more spiritual ends. On that account, it may interest you to hear a story of a place that is a way less crowded, but nonetheless not devoid of many splendid charms, i.e. the campus of Beijing Foreign Studies University. Although by no means large, it is undoubtedly a perfect place for a careless and pleasant afternoon stroll and who can tell, if assisted with some gentle push from the generally caressing hand of the Fate maybe even adventure?
Beijing Foreign Studies University or simply Beiwai, as the place is known in Chinese was established in 1941. The present campus sprawling over 304,553 square meters, despite housing a sizeable community of students is also a home to thousands of trees and flowers. What is more, the university is widely known as China's topmost linguistic university and famous for its ties with the Chinese MOFA.
But this is not at all about academic credentials of that splendid institution. It's rather about one of those carefree afternoons when the sunshine makes all the people naively happy and the impish wind brings girls'hair to life.
The campus of Beiwai is well attended by the army of gardeners in their zeal almost resembling devotees of some strange cult of Nature, who with never fading efforts make sure that the object of their everyday worship continues to spread the eternal glamour this rather peculiar form of blessing on its most ardent and deserving believers.
Out of many local scenic spots, which the university can boast of, at the first glance rather inconspicuous pond is a particularly popular meeting area. The scenery makes it look altogether surreal and exotic owing to the neighboring building of the School of Arabic Studies that in many aspects resembles Jerusalem's Dome of the Rock.
However, be warned that the pleasure of staying in the vicinity of that seemingly modest pond comes at a great price, for the place is often frequented by the mobs of shouting children, although foreigners rarely fall as the prey of their insatiable curiosity. What comes as a further and no less serious threat, you may be talked to, or even become a subject or someone's cordial interest, so if you don't wish to make new friends I would strongly advise you to avoid this campus, should you want to keep your guarded privacy undefiled.