Houhai Lake at Night-Jingshan Park-Chinglish
Trip Start Oct 06, 2011
41Trip End Nov 05, 2011
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Where I stayed
Our current location puts us just a few blocks from the Back Lakes. Qianhai and Houhai Lakes are connected by a small bridge and are surrounded by a pedestrian walkway. Over the last decade this area has built up to a real nightlife destination. There are bars, restaurants, teahouses, dessert shops, souvenir stores, bike rentals and boat rentals surrounding the southern section of these lakes. At night, and especially on weekend evenings, this place lights up and becomes very noisy. Many of the bars have live music, which ranges from lone females singing karaoke to live jazz groups to Chinese duos singing American folk music. The musical acts also range from quite good to really, really bad. The music is pumped out onto the street as a way to compete for business. Each bar also has a couple of guys on the street inviting every passerby to come in. On top of that, there are a number of people inviting you to visit a "girly bar" (its very hard to shake these people). It's a whole scene and when the weather is warmer its overflowing with activity.
Of course evenings at the Back Lakes is also great for people watching and I got to walk a bit and take lots of photos of the night lights reflecting on the glassy smooth lakes.
Jingshan Park has a hill with five pagodas that overlook the Forbidden City. The hill is man-made in an otherwise very, very flat Beijing. The view from the top is supposed to give an expansive look at the Forbidden City. It can be quite spectacular and guidebooks even suggest getting up for sunrise photos of the FC. In our foggy day, the view barely extends a ¼ mile. So in a sense, the vastness of the FC just vanishes into the horizon.
While visiting this small but lovely park, we finally caved and paid the 10 Yuan ($1.50) for Kaela to dress up in imperial costume and take a photo on a throne replica. This is really touristy stuff, but why not? Ironically we used our hard earned “capitalist” dollars from America to buy photos celebrating Imperial China, but paid with money featuring Chairman Mao’s photos. Yes, communist China has seen some changes…
The text on Dan’s shoebox:
“Ldaneuno Dennam is persidepntly pursued by the fashioning menfor 21 century”
“The New Denim brand is persistently pursued by fashionable men of the 21st century”
“The New Denim is personally sued by men of the fashion industry for the past 21 centuries”
“The New Denim is pursued by the president’s fashion advisors for 21st Century styles.”
“We do not know any English but that’s ok because no one else does either.”
And the statement ends with:
“Our consciousness of brand always support the LIBERATION of gentle men,s mind”
(… and I guess punctuation is being liberated too.)