I have the same commute everyday from work. I walk from my apartment to the line 13 subway, which is around 2 blocks away. It's a quiet commute most of the way and I get to see the rolling hills, autumn colors, smoky factories, towering Soviet-style apartment blocks and traditional villages of the far, uncharted north through the subway car window. Right outside of 北苑 (Beiyuan) station is a delapidated children's amusement park that I've been wanting to snoop around in. This weekend, Silvia, Ariel and I finally checked it out.
The park, like much of north Beijing, is tremedously spread out and filled with open space, which is rare in the city center. It's abandoned and completely dead. There are goats and sheep feeding on the grass inbetween the shooting games and matted hair on a broken monkey king ferris wheel car. The feeling is one of delicate, eerie, sadly funny isolation, which is probably what you'd expect from an abandoned amusement park.
There is more to the park than just what you see. In the back is a "pet park" that aparently closed down but is still used. Check out Silvia's investigative report. Also, Ariel posted about the same park with a much funnier tone.
cornhusk. There are local farmers and migrant workers who squat in the park. They grow corn on the outskirts.19th century Danish painting