April 15 = heat turned off + tax day

Its April 15th here in the wild west of Xinjiang China, which means -- the heat is turned off for the season. Our heat is regulated by the government, which probably saves in the long run! We've had a small heat spell the last week or so, so we've been ready to have our radiators stop radiating their heat. It can get too stuffy and dry indoors, and we are ready for some clear skies...and fresh Spring air!

For those who don't know about radiators - they are thick iron-coiled heaters, mounted on the wall in each room. They convect heat from the hot water that is pumped thru each building (heated by coal plants around the city) via many pipes. The amount of "heat" is somewhat regulated depending on the outside temperature, but we don't have manual regulators in our homes. Its either ON or OFF. We will have heat again on October 15th, 2008. Here is a lovely photo of a radiator in our home:

Back in the homeland, tax season hits its peak - and the IRS is making bank. Either way, we hope you get a lovely breath of fresh air (big refund?) in this season!