A weekend of parks & stadiums

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Monday, August 6, 2012

Starting with Friday night, there ended up being about 15 of us gathering at the Brussels bar which was good, so we had a couple there – met some new people who we'd been in touch with on the Internations site, a girl called Tracey from Preston, who is here as a Disney Trainer – teaching young Chinese children English through the world of Disney, and an American guy who has just arrived to teach at one of the International schools.

The beer got a bit expensive after happy hour so we went to our favourite 1F bar to finish off the evening.

Lovely lie in on Saturday followed by an outing to Jiangshan Park, just at the North exit to the Forbidden City. It’s one of Beijing’s few central hills and the earth was excavated to make the Forbidden city moat. It’s also said to protect the palace from evil spirits and dust storms which can occur in the spring time (the Gobi desert is only 150km away and winds are blowing sand 2km closer to the city per year, pushing 30m high dunes even closer). We climbed many steps to visit the Temples on the top with fantastic views over the city, the lakes, the business district, parks & Forbidden City. Luckily we chose a very clear day so could see a long way.

Headed out Saturday night to watch Beijing Guoan play footie – see Pezzers match report below!! (and Uncle Dave, glad you’re enjoying them!).

Sunday we went for eggs benedict at Switch, we met the manager at our first networking event & promised to visit but hadn’t, the networking even last week was here so we were drawn back, fab food apart from my disappointment that my eggs benedict were salmon & not ham / bacon as I presumed….. silly me!! Andy had double salmon! Great service, free smoothie tasters & we left full up, walking it off back into town. Caught up with a few friends over cold beers in the sunshine on the terrace, amazing how many people we know already & keep bumping into! Quickly popped back home to change for dinner.

Back in the UK Dad used to work with a lady called Shasha from China, after bumping into his old boss recently they got talking about the fact that Andy & I had moved to Beijing, and that Shasha is back in Beijing now with her husband Michael so they put us in touch. Off we went to meet 2 complete strangers for dinner!!! We had a very lovely evening with them, chatted loads & they were really friendly. Great Chinese restaurant on the roof terrace, they chose the food so we all shared & got to try lots of different dishes, all washed down with some beer & wine of course. A few hours passed & we decided we’d meet up again sometime soon, nice to have some Chinese friends too now!

Just before the Pez report, a thank you to Georgina for your comments, glad you're enjoying the blog & hope your wedding plans are going well :)
And to Sarah Hobday, a very loyal blog supporter - even reading it & commenting on her holiday in Greece! Thank you ladies!!!

Match Report Beijing Guoan Vs Dalian by Pezzerrrrrrrrrrrrrrr.

Happy to report that as met our ticket master Alistair from Preston at our new local watering hole Switch for pre match drinks no rain clouds were in sight. We had a couple of local beers before wandering down towards the 70,000 seater Workers Stadium with our fellow green clad Guoan supporters. Alistair & I getting thumbs up, double takes for wearing Guoan shirts and with Tracy in her green top. Good job green goes with ginger is all I can say as both Alistair & Tracy are of that colour hahaha.

As we passed thought the fake shirts and T shirt stalls Tracy decides she can’t be the only one without a shirt with Guoan on it. So a hard bargaining began and achieved a nice green polo shirt for 40RMB, which is equal to £4.

We entered the stadium via the tight security ring which makes UK policing look soft and found our seats not far from where we sat in the pouring rain. A young local lad turns round and gave us paper to put on our seats before we sat down. Very nice of him too, and he just grinned the whole match at us. The stadium was packed with 50,000 Guoan’s and around 100 Dalian supporters. Yes a 100 Dalian supporters, not a great place for away fan travelling is China (Dalian = 1 hr flight away).

Guoan lined up with two foreign players Darko Matic of Croatia and Joffre David Guerrón Méndez of Ecuador. With Frédéric Oumar Kanouté, the exSpurs & West Ham striker on the bench. Guoan were looking for their first win in three games. With Guoan attacking the goal to our left and closest to us the game kicked out.

Guoan had much of the ball in the first 27 minutes with the crowd shouting loudly behind them, Several attacks petered out into nothing. However one nearly hit the back of the net only for the goal keeper to get in the way and I mean get in the way. The ball was cleared and several minutes after being hit by the ball the keeper collapse on the floor as if hit by a bullet. Best bit of acting I’ve seen out here since we have arrived. The crowd did teach us a new word at this point 'Shabie’ I can’t say what it means as children read this. But, its Lou Neville’s favorites saying hahaha.

The first booking of two can within the next few minutes to the chorus of Shabie, with us joining into. Dalian looked good on the break and where unlucky themselves not to score. Which with watching this lot is not to be unexpected. So half time still 0-0.

Half time is spent just chatting between ourselves as no point going for a drink as no beer or coffee to be had. Tried to get Tracy to have a cold hamburger but she wasn’t having any of it. Alistair told us at this point that a season ticket was priced at £50. Which, after a couple of games means you’re in profit. So decision made 2 season tickets will be purchased next season. Anyone lucky enough to be out here when a games on can go. You lucky lucky people.

Second half kicks off in much the same way as the first Guoan keeping the ball but not doing much with it and Dalian breaking and looking like scoring. 52 minutes in Kanouté comes of the bench in search of a goal and should have been given a penalty. Not to be and you can guess what we were all shouting. Yes your right Shabie hahaha. We also know the words to the songs and they are based around UK songs and one is Pet Shop Boys Go West.

With 74 minutes on the clock Xu Liang catches the keeper of his line and strikes the ball from the half way line and scores Beckham style. 1-0 Guoan. If it wasn’t noisy enough before my god no wonder they don’t have a roof hahahaha.

5 minutes later a Guoan player gets booked and the Shabie is once more directed at the ref. Who really did have a bad game. The game ended 1-0 Guoan after 95 minutes. So off we head out of the stadium and away from riot police swat teams and the military to the bar.

Yes you got it we found a pub just round the corner and had a couple of Tuborg beers. Useful fact for you Tuborg is a Danish beer first brewed in 1873 and became part of Carlsberg in 1970.

The next home match is on Friday 17th Aug @ 19.30 against Liaoning Whowin. So until next time sports fans this is Pezzerrrrrrrrrr signing off.
Slideshow Report as Spam

Comments

Dad and Mum on

Hi,
Great news you met up with Shasha and Michael.
We really enjoy reading the blogs, as well as the match reports from Andy!
Talking of Andy I bet he snores all night long, I have just come off Sype from him at 2am your time.,He was blotto and kept repeating himself after telling me how many Vodka shots he drank.He must have been talking in Chinese as I could not understand him! Will Sype again at the weekend, Love Dad and Mum xx

Sal & Ian on

Its another weekend guys, wonder what your plans are for this one? More sightseeing or perhaps just 'chillaxing'!!! Woken to a beaut of morning here (Sat)

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