We left home on Friday, at 4:00 am to reach a 6:00 am flight, the first flight of a very long trip, two hours to Philadelphia with forty minutes transit and a flight to Chicago, two hours transit and a thirteen hours, yes THIRTEEN hours, flight to Beijing. I was blissfully tired and lucky enough to sleep during almost the whole trip. We arrived in Beijing on Saturday, at 5:00 pm. There is a twelve hours difference in time between Florida and Beijing.
Of course, we lost our luggage. While we ran down the Philadelphia airport to catch our connection to Chicago, our suitcases procrastinated and missed the connection. We met a couple from Seattle who were in the same predicament. Very nice people, so friendly, they couldn't wait to start their vaction and enjoy it. I will tell you more about this couple in my last post.
A bus took us all to the Beijing Sheraton, probably the largest and most luxurious Sheraton I have seen in my life. We were so tired we immediately collapsed on the bed and slept untill the next day.
For our first day in Beijing, we booked a tour with an adorable guide very fluent in English. She showed us the Olympic Nest, downtown Beijing, the Summer Palace, cloisonné factory where we had a delicious lunch in the adjacent restaurant.
I was agreeably surprised to discover that Beijing is a very clean, modern metropolitan capital with more high-rises than Manhattan. I am not kidding. Not at all the idea some of us have of a China.
Your question #1: Which city in the Far East is considered a shoppers' world?
1. The 2008 Olympic Nest
2. One of many highrises in Beijing. Notice the TV screen.