We may all have different attitude to computer games, but Asia, where we all live now, is undoubtedly the world leader in popularity of games. World championships, faculties of professional gamers in universities, gaming companies with income higher than the oil and gas ones – all are the examples of the new trends. Some parents allow their children to spend online an hour or so after they are done with all the homework and extra classes, some leave “computer leisure” for weekends, some don’t allow to play it at all – and then struggle with their kids hiding and playing computer at their friend’s houses.
In anyway, the rule of “spending no more than 30 minutes online a day” doesn’t apply to any of us now: we are always available via Facebook and WeChat, scrolling the news feed and messages in numerous group chats, starting to be nervous if there are problems with internet. We are becoming so dependent, that some actions – like making waterproof cases for phones to chat while you’re relaxed in a bath, or sleeping always next to your phone with a sound on becomes a usual thing, that would sound just hilarious 20 years ago. The information flow is enormous, and it’s hard to cope with all the unimportant facts you get. Also, many modern citizens are getting al kinds of new heath problems like poor memory or extra weight. However the latest trends are to make people go out of the table, straiten up back muscles, and combine online games and exercises. The brightest example is Pokemon Go. Although it is still not available in China, Beijingers community has done something even cooler – opened a copy of Counter strike game field in a park.
Kids and their parents will be happy to feel themselves in a game came alive. The territory looks like a field for paintball, with a lot of big rusty fuel tanks, wooden shelters, slides and trees. It differs from paintball place though, with an absence of a fence – still staying perfect to hide and send water gun shoots to other team players through small holes. Imagination will help lids to come up with hundred games to play there – starting from simple hide and seek.
However, you have to remember that the territory is open and even if you’re wearing helmet and protection from toy bullets, there might be defenseless people around. The place also has a two-floor hut, with stairs from both sides – a perfect place to hide a flag that both teams should be trying to get.
The greatest thing in this “Live CS” area is maybe an old-looking helicopter, put in thickets – full impression of a destroyed machine remains, like in an apocalypses movie.
There are also few arbors with tables and seats – you can bring some food and drinks and sit there, resting after long runs. Unfortunately, this also seems to be a favorite place for elderly Chinese gentlemen, who also use this place to get together smoking traditional cigarettes and contemptuously spitting around.
The park also has a big children playground that may be more interesting for smaller ones. A lot of space, slides, nets to climb and levels to jump from one to another.
Nearby you can rent a pony for your kid to make a round on park green paths. There is a kart-racing ring as well, with future racers driving around in short cars. Moreover, the park has a big lake with paddleboats available for rent, and these traditional Chinese dances starting at 8.
The disadvantage of a green oasis is that, as in many other Beijing parks, it doesn’t really have a lot of light in the evening – so right after the sunset, that usually starts at 7.30 plus and ends half an hour later, be prepared to leave – or you will have an exciting night exploring the nature in the dark.
On the North and West side neighboring streets there are a lot of restaurants where you can grab some food after the walk.
Xinlong Park: 8A Xinglongzhuang, Gaobeidian Country, Chaoyang District. Gaobeidian subway station, line 1, exit A, B or C. 兴隆公园: 朝阳区高碑店乡兴隆庄甲8号. No entrance fee.
Photos: krockha.ru; treaw42.com; Anastasia Levina