Thursday, June 18, 2009
We are settling into Beijing, where it has been foggy and cloudy and HUMID since our arrival. The heavens opened with rain yesterday for about 5 minutes - it sounded like a million trucks driving by. Then it stopped.We visited the summer palace yesterday and climbed longevity hill to the buddhist temple of incense (or somesuch), and saw the marble boat. It was amazing. The funniest thing though is the attention Addy especially attracts with her blue eyes and blonde hair. She had a bevy of grandmothers coming up to pinch her cheeks and kiss her and pat her. She was freaked out at first, but by the end of the day stood their stoically, smiled and said xie xie, which made them all smile.Today we have a meeting in the am, then are off to see the acrobats this afternoon. Sometime I will take mary shopping for some girl time. I got a manicure at the local supermarket/toystore/clothing/etc store - all of 20 RMB (or about $3.00). Fun. The need for a manicure transcends language.We had famous Beijing roast duck the day before yesterday - sliced and you roll it up on pancakes. Addy tried everthing and discovered she really likes chines pancakes and duck. Mary discovered duck soup broth (and noodles for breakfast). Right now it is 6:30 am and i am trying to get her to try seaweed salad for breakfast. Truly teh breakfastst here are wonderful with a full chinese buffet (veggies, corn, noodles, rice (corn on the cob seems to be the national treat!) tofu), plus assorted iced pickeled vegetables (beets, seaweed, beansprouts, radish, bean salad - some spicy, some not), plus pastries, an egg station, a congee and noodle soup station, fresh and canned fruit (always good watermelon), cereal (rice krispies and others) and their version of a western breakfast including bacon (after a fashion) sausage or meatballs (in soy...pretty good), bread pudding...sauteed potatoes. Toast and croissants. I enjoy every bit of it.Apparently Shiyan the senior representative of Bethany here has spoken at some point with Yan and she is very very excieted about getting a family of her own. Dong is happy if his sister is happy. Only three days to go.A big thank you to Fiona, Mary's good friend, who is doing these posts for us. All blog sites are blocked in China. There is NO free speech here.Our hotel - we have decided the beds are made of plywood. Harder than rocks. I have tripled a blanket under me. Mary has opted for the couch. Addy stole Mary's comforter and balled that up under her. And dad - well, he can sleep anywhere.Generally dining outside of the hotel is cheap. We all four feasted on duck for a total (including a beer) was $30.00. I've rambled on in no particular order. Will email more to dear Fiona tomorrow to post.You all can email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.Love from BeijingNan, Lon, Mary and Addy-the-blonde otherwise known as shao pengyou (little friend).
at 4:50 PM