China is officially my second home
20.09.2010 0 °F
So we left this past Friday at 11pm from the Jinling Hotel to the train station for Beijing. We rode 1st class in 2 separate rooms with 4 beds in each room (4 girls together and the 2 boys in a random room with two other strangers). I quickly passed out in the top bunk and 11 hours later woke up in BEIJING!
Day 1: Arrived at Beijing Forbidden City Hostel after getting in to an unmarked "taxi" from the train station (Don't worry though Parents! I took pictures of his face, license plate and car just encase lol). After we all unpacked we went to the restaurant in the hostel and it was actually really good. I had an omelet with toast for 22 RMB ($3) and then we went to the famous Silk Market with 5 FLOORS OF BARGAIN SHOPPING!!!! AKA DREAM COME TRUE! After I finished buying way too many gifts for people that haven't even reached out to me since I've been here (ah huh! I called u out), a couple of us went to a Chinese Acrobatic show (see videos).
Day 2: All 6 of us met up with Blair’s parents at their boutique style hotel at 8:30 am to get in the tour van for the 1.5 hour drive to the Great Wall. I was surprised that the drive to one of the largest tourist destinations in the world was so scenic and undeveloped. There were many cornfields and the weather was beautiful with a pleasant temperature of about 30 degrees Celsius. Once we arrived at the Great Wall we had to walk a mile to the gate entrance. It cost 70 RMB ($10) for the ticket to enter and the lift up to the wall. We had to push our way through the strip of beggars, pick pockets and vendors that could smell American blood. I thought that the Great Wall would be a serene environment but I was sooo wrong. We got up to the top of the wall, I took my pictures and the thrill was quickly gone. At the end of the day it was just a wall and I made my way back down the mountain and got on a camel (lol).
The rest of the group slowly came back from their personal journey’s at the wall and we got some Subway at the Great Wall Welcome Center (yes, even in China). When we got back to the city we went to a Kung Fu Show at the Red Theater which was AWEFUL! Lol little boys jumped around the stage in halter tops going, “Hi ya!” and the story line was the definition of homo. “Little boy wants to be brave. Little boy studys Kung Fu. Lil boy grows up to be Kung Fu legend. The End”. I walked out of that after 45 mins and went back to the Silk Market.
Day 3: We met up with Blair’s parents again and finished our tour of Beijing with the Forbidden City, Tian en men Square, Heavenly Palace and the Birds Nest. (Check out the photos) Then we got on our 9:30 pm train ride back to our home, Nanjing.
Honestly, I did not want to go on this trip at first because I was so exhausted from work and I was just tired of being out but I am really happy I went. Beijing is HUGE but it was not any different than Seattle or DC. Their were many foreigners so a lot of the interns didn't like going out as much because they didn't get enough attention. I didn't go out because I figured Beijing's club scene would be way better than Nanjing's and I didn't want to go back to Nanjing having experienced REAL clubs. I would rather stay in my little bubble where Nanjing is the only club scene I know (in China and the USA) and too me it is great!
Side Note: Leaving school for a semester and going to China was the best decision that I ever made. My horizons have been stretched apart and I feel like an almost whole individual now. This experience has been more than an internship at a five star hotel or a cool study abroad, it has taught me what it really means to be an American and what my country has to offer. It's funny how the farther you are from home the closer you get to your roots...