Day 10 – Wednesday 19th June – Beijing
Short Chinese Language Lesson ( Mandarin) – Phonetic
NeeHow – Hello (any time of the Day)
Sheh sheh – Thank You
Boo Sheh Sheh – No Thank You (polite NO)
Boo Yaeo – Don’t want (Stronger version of NO)
Tai Gway – Too expensive ( Genelle hasn’t used it yet)
Ding Ding How – Bloody Good
Bing Peijo – Ice cold beer
Some facts or versions of the truth;
90% of Chinese are of Han origin, the Han came from Xi’an
The other 10% are made up of about 50 ethnic groups
There are 32 provinces in China
Beijing is split into The Old City and the New City
Trip A Deal started in 2015 with 3000 travellers to China
This year they will have 30,000 travellers to China
Trip A Deal is sponsored by the Chinese Government
From 1949 to 1979 China was closed to the west
There have been 24 Dynasties ruling China
13 of these came from Xi’an
Enough of that, you’ll go to sleep. A sleep in this morning, breakfast at 7, we leave at 8. First stop is a pearl factory, the usual sales pitch by a pretty and articulate girl, a lot succumb to the lure of sales pitch, my purchase is a cappuccino, 25 yuan ($5) and it’s a good coffee, not as good as the Def Chef at home by a long shot though. The Navigator is like a moth to a flame when it comes to jewellery, I stay away from her as I tend to make sarcastic comments as she seeks moral justification to spend ridiculous amounts on jewellery, but as we all know she doesn’t have much jewellery so I figure stay away stay calm and stay alive is the best option.
Tiananmen Square is the site of the student uprisings 40 years ago, only a week or 2 ago. About the same time the Berlin Wall came down. It’s a big space, the national museum is there, the Chinese parliament is there and the Forbidden City, which was the Emperors winter palace is still standing and pretty much original runs off Tiananmen Square. There are thousands of people, it’s Chinese school holidays at the moment.
There is a long history in their area, the throne room, the concubines rooms near the Emperors rooms, something like 9000 rooms there. It’s an enormous area, clean, maintained in traditional fashion, with a beautiful garden on the edge near the moat.
Lunch is a mixture of options, The Sparky and I head to Chinese and have sweat and sour pork, spicy chicken and fried rice with a couple of local Beijing beers to wash it down. It takes about 3 hours to get sensation back into my tongue and lips after the spicy chicken, but the Sparky gobbles it up and the sauce as well – he’ll be a certainty for the ring of fire at the Great Wall tomorrow. The Mechanic, The Nurse and The Seamstress and The Navigator head to a Pizza Hut for Italian food in China.
We move on to The Golden Dynasty theatre production at Happy Valley, directed by the guy who put the opening ceremony together for the Beijing Olympics. It’s a spectacular show, with acrobats, trained flying peacocks, dancers, a water feature on stage that is hard to believe is possible. A mistake by Michael sees him hand the flag to the Navigator, we could end up in North Korea rather than at the bus.
We’re back at the hotel at 5, it’s been hot hot hot today, we’re dehydrated and tired after a long day, tonight we’re chilling. Genelle is going market shopping and I’m getting a foot massage. I don’t need much for dinner.
Tomorrow is The Great Wall, quick trip via the 2012 Beijing Olympics site, a Jade Museum (a factory with a smooth talking pretty girl who will sell us stuff), a rickshaw ride and explore the old part of Beijing and a Hutong village where they still live a traditional old style Chinese life.
Ding ding how from Beijing for the day