Snakebit

Just one month ago, Lunghu made his first unofficial prediction for the Year of the Snake:

 “Lunghu predicts that during 2013 the Zhengzhou/ Kaifeng area of the Yellow River basin will be in the news for something other than the world’s longest bullet train railway line.”

Some feng shui soothsayers have already gone on record as predicting that the Water Snake year could portend railway disasters (because a string of train cars bears some resemblance to a serpent).  However, they may have been subconsciously trapped in a mid-20th century mode of thinking:  in this century, the present day transportation avatar of the snake is the superhighway/autobahn/autostrada/motorway/dual carriageway –just imagine all those colorful lane markings as garter snake stripes and you’ll understand immediately.  Then, when your annual Stem and Branch align as Water over Fire, a sharper picture of potential disaster comes into focus.

A truckload of fireworks intended for Lunar New Year celebrations went off Friday in a massive, deadly explosion that destroyed part of an elevated highway in central China.  An 80-meter stretch of a major east-west highway collapsed in Sanmenxia, Mianchi County about 90 kilometers west of Luoyang in Henan province.  Photos posted online by Xinhua News Agency showed firefighters below [the highway] spraying water on scorched hunks of concrete, wrecked trucks and flattened shipping containers.

Sanmenxia_20120201

Water over Fire.  How close is Mianchi County to Zhengzhou & Kaifeng?  Just down the road.  All in northern Henan Province, in the vast floodplain of the Yellow River.  Close enough for government work, as the saying goes.

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