At Th'Olympic Games

Trip Start Feb 26, 2010
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Trip End Feb 26, 2011


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Where I stayed
Ti an a men Sunrise Hostel

Flag of China  ,
Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Awoke to another Sunny Day, did some blogging then set off to the Summer Palace. On the way however we changed our minds and decided to go to Th'Olympics as it was closer. Getting the Metro showed just how big Beijing really is. We changed four different Lines to get there and it seemed to take about 45 minutes even though we are right near it on our map. I think the Beijing Olympics were absolutly iconic as were the stadia, it is really impressive to see them all so close together yet all in one spot. Lots of people wanting to sell tat and long kites. Erica really wanted to buy a birds nest stadium ashtray (for 3.50 pounds) but there is no way I'm lugging that about for a year and breaking it. As far as I'm concerned they will sell tat like that on Ebay.

Erica edit:  It wasn't tat actually it was really nice!!!

From here we decided to go to the Lama temple which again with no guide book or directions we knew nothing about. Only that it was one of the main sights. It was really impressive again and although no practicing of religion is allowed in China (at least I think that is true) it was refreshing to see so many people praying to the buddhist statues and burning incense by the absolute bucket load. Perhaps the highlight was the final temple which houses the tallest Buddha in the world, 18.5 metres high no less. The building that houses it is also amazing (see pics).

The old legs were starting to give up though and bearing in mind we are doing a Great Wall trip tomorrow decided to head for a beer and some food. Trying to get back to one meal a day and we splashed out another 5 pounds on a fantastic meal for two with beers in some little dive. We went for the safe options of a sweet and sour pork and sizzling beef with black pepper and a mountain of fried rice. We must have eaten less than anyone else in there (which was unusual for us) and it was our only meal of the day. How come the chinese are so thin?

Not much else to report really other than Captain Red Beard is now thinking of shaving. I'm not sure what it is but people just continue to stare and point and laugh. Today I was asked twice to have my picture taken with Chinese people in front of the birds nest stadium. I have now started to believe they think I am David Beckham. I always thought I looked more like Brad Pitt but never mind. Erica thinks it may just be the fact they have never seen a red beard (we haven't seen anybody with a beard or a tash). Alternatively perhaps they thought Geoff Capes was visiting? How Retro.

Beijing is a really modern and vibrant city not at all what we were expecting everything and the food is devine. The hostel is great as well, we pay 5 pound each a night for a bed and are within a minutes walk of Raffles Hotel and the Beijing Grand one of which is in the best 10 hotels of the world, we are also 5 minutes to Tian A Men square. Alll in all we are really feeling at home here.

Anyway off to prepare mentally for tomorrows Great Wall of China walk which is apprantley knackering. I think I'll start with 2 large beers. It has also knackered the budget at 23 pounds each but we decided the Great Wall of China is not really an optional. Plus we are still well under budget today (metro only costs 20p for each whole journey regardless of changes or stops).

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Comments

Vic on

Maybe they are amazed to find a cross between ultimate lego man and DB.

farknash
farknash on

Do. Not. Shave.
:)

Gregg on

U need to keep the beard Anderringaroo!!!!!! They only want ur photo coz they've never seen a real Golborner before.......u'llb hunted down, shot and stuffed next!! lol

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