Friday, June 13, 2008


AFTER Ulaanbaatar, Julienne and I spent two nights with our friends in Beijing.
Here's what we learned:
  • When you arrive in China, you must register yourself at a police station (unless you stay at a hotel, which will do that for you). At the police station, I chatted with a Chinese American who had a 'warning' because he registered himself only after nine days in the country.
  • The city is ready for the Olympics: very clean, I hadn't noticed anyone spitting, and people were very friendly to foreigners. Talk to any taxi driver about the coming Games - and you could the people's expectant spirit.
  • Silk Street - a popular shopping place for tourists - wasn't our thing. Julienne was actually terrified by the overly friendly sales people.
  • But the Great Wall was magnificient. If you go, you must not miss the cable car up and tobbagon ride down. (It felt dangerous!)
  • The Forbidden City was over-crowded with tourists, but Julienne and I enjoyed the dressing up in costumes. I was some famous empress and she was Mulan.
  • Visited a local market and bought four bags of nuts home. We were impressed that it was very organized and clean (compared to our Jurong East wet market). Shame on us.
  • Had a $1 wash at a hair salon. It's hard not to laugh when things are so cheap.
  • Sales people asked the most personal questions. Two Starbucks gals found out where I was from, whom I traveled with, why I went to Mongolia, and how old my daughter was all within seven minutes.
  • When people are tired, they just sat down anywhere, we noticed. I saw a man stooping down in the middle of a bridge, and another sitting on a highway - out of the blue.

No comments:

love the ocean - God made it for Himself

About Me

In the Old Testament in the Bible, there was a man named Jacob who "wrestled with God and man." He wouldn't let God go until God answered his prayers. God admired that and renamed him Israel, "the one who fought or wrestled and prevailed". He fought with man--his inner man--and conquered his own weaknesses. He's my hero. He is what I hope God and man see me to be.