Beijing, China part 1 continued
Part 1 continues:
After the Great Wall we got back on the bus and went for a tea ceremony… and got ourselves a PeePee Boy.. What’s a PeePee Boy, you might ask??? Do you see right in the middle of the tray a little terra cotta statue of a boy? Well, as we were shown the correct way to prepare and serve tea, we were told to make sure that the water was just the right temp. The girls showing us brought out this little statue and poured cold water on it., but the water just poured right off. However, if you pour boiling water (or just under boiling) on the statue, it would pee — and then you would know that the water temperature was just right.. Well, aren’t they clever.. You couldn’t buy just the “PeePee Boy” – you got him free if you purchased a certain amount of tea..
We then took the bus into Beijing City proper, actually the old section of town, which is in the heart of downtown near a lovely (man-made) lake where there are still old houses that reflect the way the Chinese used to live. Our guide explained how there are now 2 different kinds of ways to live in Beijing. The old way is where people live in small compounds that house small individual rooms (separate kitchen, bedrooms, common room and courtyard) where community is still a big part of life, where everyone knows everyone and everyone helps everyone. The new way is where people move into one of the big complexes springing up everywhere, where you can buy (for 70 years) a condo and live on the 27th floor and not know anyone in the building.. This sounds similar to many places in the USA (New York, Miami, LA , etc.). We were invited to one of these types of home while the daughter-in-law was preparing dinner.
I really have to thank Jim and Wools for allowing me to post their pictures on the blog..
The little white tag on the left hand side of the house lets you know that this is a government house. Which means that the person who owns the house works for the government. The shape of the 2 pillars in the front of the house lets you know if he/she is an engineer or a civil worker. Rounded means engineer, and square would be civil worker.
Typical streets in the old part of town…
From there we went to an Acrobatic Show.. The acrobats were fantastic..
I took some videos that I can’t post while I am not online, and they would take forever to load so I will post the videos I took once we get back to civilization.. So stay tuned for that..
From there to dinner (a Peking Duck dinner) and the Prime Hotel for the night.. Before I go into what the hotel was like, I want to post some photos of Beijing at night..
Back to the hotel, which was fantastic.. The rooms were huge, and the linens were PERFECT.. anyone who knows me, knows that the bedding is EXTREMELY important to me, and this bedding was top notch.. If I could have packed up and taken the duvet and the sheets, I would have. The bathroom was all Carrera marble, and there was both a bathtub and a separate shower. I would have loved to pick up the whole room and bring it aboard the ship! We had such fun looking at the English translation of things all over Beijing.. But the hotel room had some real doozies.
They provided almost everything complimentary, 2 toothbrushes, 2 sewing kit, 2 shower caps, 2 of every soap, shampoo and body lotion, 2 hair brushes, 2 shoe clothes.. but there were some things that were UN Complimentary and they were listed on the item as UN-complimentary.. such as condoms, and detox foot pads.. ?????
They had laundry bags and I thought of “stealing” one of them since they were folded so beautifully to show off the logo of the hotel in gold embroidery and the name of the hotel.. but once you unfold them in big gold embroidered letters was “NOT FREE”. I pulled my hand away as if I just got burned!!!!!
Dawn rising over Beijing a beautiful windy day which blew away the smog and left us with great weather for our second day
The next morning we were greeted by the biggest breakfast buffet ever. They even put Israeli hotel breakfast buffets, which are sumptuous, to shame. It was all prepared by 6 AM for us since we were back on the tour and ready to go by 7:45 AM.
There was dim sum, fried noodles and rice, sautéed cauliflower and cabbage, a bread station with all kinds of baguettes, rolls and sliced breads, cereals (hot and cold), congee, warm milks (soy and cow’s), exotic and regular fruits, fish, dried fruits and nuts, an omelet station — and I know I am missing something..
A whole fish and carving Peking Duck tableside
I messed up the bed then realized I forgot to take a picture.
We piled back onto the bus and headed to Tiananmen Square. We were told we would have a 3 mile walk and were worried about it, but it turned out to be a breeze since there was just so much to see that we barely noticed the time or our feet, and the weather was perfect if not a bit cold, which was great for walking.
Part 2 to continue: