第一天: Fifteen Hours of Flight

As the title says, today I spent fifteen hours in flight. In fact, this whole weekend has been one big mirage-like blur. Since Friday morning at about 2:00 AM, I have slept roughly 8 hours total, partially my fault and partially circumstantial. Anyways, the first flight was not too bad, only about 35 minutes. Then, the second flight was just under 14 hours, which was rough. Fortunately, United Airlines had plenty of options for entertainment, decent food, brought the drink carts often, and the flight went very smooth. However, the leg room was not plentiful for a 6 foot tall person and the seats were not so comfortable. Anyways, back to the entertainment, I was able to watch Black Panther and the new Kingsman which were awesome and I was surprised they had such recent movies available.

Once we finally landed and got into the airport, I had a jolt of excitement to start experiencing all the new sights and everything else Beijing had to over. It took roughly an hour to complete all the housekeeping stuff at the airport (fingerprints, customs, luggage, et cetera). Then we hopped on a bus and left for the hotel. My very first impressions were in awe of how green the highways were. I mean, there was plants and trees in the median as well as on the sides of the road too. Some people were quick to insist that this was just and attempt to beautify and heighten your first thoughts about the country being just outside the airport. However, it went on all the way to the hotel (and everywhere else I’ve been so far). All of the streets and highways are surrounded by beautiful flowers, trees, and, or shrubs. To add to the surreal-ness of having all the greenery surrounding the infrastructure, it was all extremely well kept and maintained.

Another first impression I had had was the amount of bikes available for public use. Once we got more into the city, there were bikes EVERYWHERE. Upon further inspection and questioning, we figured out that it is a public bike share program and that the back wheels are locked until you scan a QR code in an app to use the bikes.

Speaking about bikes, let’s move onto the insane traffic dynamic. The way drivers and bikes share the roads is almost poetic. It seemingly looks as if there are no rules on the road because of how hectic everything is. However, for how crazy it looked, I had not seen one crash. If people drove and acted on the states’ roads like this, I am sure there would be many more crashes.

After getting into our hotel and settling down, we headed off to dinner. We went to have an excellent family style dinner in a magnificent restaurant about a 20 minute drive from the hotel. I wish I could fill everyone in our all the excellent food I tried, but to be honest, I had no idea what I was eating most of the time. The one dish that I had recognized was the duck that they had carved in front of us which was excellent. Also, when you are starving and have no silverware, you learn to use chopsticks very fast.

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One Comment Add yours

  1. love the descriptions/and got a chuckle visualizing eating with chop sticks!

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