I made it! After a grueling 36 hours of travel I am finally here in China!
We arrived at the Beijing International Airport at 11 at night (11 am eastern time) and were immediately met with numerous customs stops and identification checks. Luckily our entire group made it through without being stopped or questioned!
Its kind of scary how they call it QUARANTINE….someone said that if you cough while going through the customs process, they will hold you back and possibly send you home for fear of you bringing and unwanted disease into the country. They take tons of precautions!
We were met by our tour guide, Grant, who led us to our tour bus which then took us to our (supposedly) 5 star hotel. Grant is so nice and really funny. When describing the temperatures we would be experiencing in Beijing he surprised with a rousing solo performance of the cheesy 90’s band, 98 degrees, greatest hits. 🙂 It was hilarious and a much needed laugh after a tense day and a half of travel.
We arrived at the hotel and were already for a good night sleep. However, it didn’t take us long to realize that the bed were comparable to wooden boards. Very stiff! I guess that’s where the chinese get their good posture from.
I have definitely noticed some unique things about China in the short time I have been here. Here are some of the most notable things:
*there are hardly any animals around in the city (i.e. birds, dogs, squirl-ish creatures, none really)
*people smoke EVERY where (bathrooms, hotel, restaurants, you name it)
*Cars first, pedestrians second (cars do not stop for ANYTHING, you have to sprint to get across busy crossing areas)
*Chinese people love foreigners (especially those with dark skin and light hair), my friends and I have already been asked if people could take pictures with us several times. We’re like celebrities!!!
There are a ton more but that’s all I can think of off the top of my head.
So far the food has been pretty good so far. Breakfast at the hotel we are at serves american and Chinese style breakfast foods, while lunch and dinner have been fully Chinese dishes. Being here, I found out how much I love eating with chopsticks! I even bought some today to bring home with me.
Can’t wait to use them back in the USA.
Sadly, so far I am unable to upload my pics to the blog. 🙁 I know, I am really upset too. But here is a little run down of my 1rst day in Beijing:
~visited the Lama Temple (a buddhist monastery home to a 6 story Buddha)
~visited the Confucius Temple (over 2,000 years old)
~Hutongs of old Beijing on Lake Ten Temples, rickshaw ride around the lake, and dinner at a local restaurant
All the places we visited today had amazingly beautiful architecture and I cannot wait to share the pictures with you. Also the food we have been served has been so colorful and delicious<- I also have great pics of the that stuff. I will get pics up as soon as I can, but as for now I am off to bed. The jetlag is slowly setting in…..