Amsterdam view from Amsterdam Tower

Amsterdam view from Amsterdam Tower
The view from Amsterdam Tower

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Big Beijing

As far as I remember when I was a kid, I used to call this city as Peking. I can’t recall when I started calling it Beijing… All is about different spelling from Chinese words to English.

Tiananmen Square

China territory region that I've been to is Hong Kong, Macau and the furthest is Senzhen! Years ago, when my friend Anyes still worked and based in Hong Kong, took me to “Seven Wonders in the World” in Senzhen. This city is the border between Hong Kong and China.

Tiananmen Gate

We took a train from Hong Kong, I got visa on arrival, and we got panic once we saw the immigration counter! As we had to queue separately! She had temporary residence card and I didn’t. Those years, mobile phone wasn’t common yet, so we were not sure how we would meet again after the immigration… Luckily our intuition connected; perhaps it is because we have the same birthday, we met before the last exit.

Wangfujing Street, shop till you drop!
Wangfujing Street

This time… I went to Beijing. It's a big city. Big Beijing, a nick name I gave to this city. Beyond my imagination, it is a very big city with so many people. Perhaps it is because I am used to “District 1” Ho Chi Minh City (HCMC) which is small and compact. Anywhere is reachable within few minutes in HCMC, it is either by foot or motorbike. 

Sanlitun Village, a cool place to hang out

One of the buildings in Sanlitun

If I compare the streets between HCMC and Beijing, I am not talking about the size - which of course Beijing has wider streets – but in terms of vehicle, I didn’t see many motorbikes in Beijing. Most streets has special lane for bikes or scooters, but I could count a few motorbike only. One thing that I noticed the most; less bikes honk in Beijing!

Tea house near Wangfujing area

My tour guide, Xiaowei, told me that there is 19.6 million people living in Beijing. Comparing to Jakarta where I grew up, it is probably the same number of people but smaller size.

Cute Starbucks, Xiyuan subway station, near Summer Place

In mid of May, it should be almost summer. During my days in Beijing, it was around 27 degree Celcius which was good for outdoor activities; sunny, windy, dry but still bearable. 

I like taking pics of franchise restaurant written in Chinese characters

Oriental Look

Wherever I am in Asia, except my own home country, people thought I am local in that country. In Singapore, people would greet me in Singlish, in Tokyo most people say “moshi moshi” to me, in Thailand I was often greeted in Thai, and in Vietnam people greets me in Vietnamese…

I like Cakwe Goreng (deep fried Chinese bread/stick)

Anyway, I just enjoy the situation. My beau? He loves it. Long before we arrived in China, he told me that he would not do anything about it, and would just stand behind me if anyone speaks Chinese to me. In able to survive in this city, I relied on Google map and Google translate!

I took a taxi once to one of the tourist destinations. The uncle taxi driver couldn’t stop smiling and peeping at me. He tried to make conversation but language is really the main barrier.

I showed him the hotel card with list of sites and I pointed out Tiananmen Square. He smiled. I said, “ya?” and hoped he understood. He replied, “ya!”

As if I knew that he wanted to ask me question, I said “Indonesia!” and pointed myself. He smiled, “Ooo…. Indonesia! Ya...

While we passed the big building closer to Tiannamen, I took some pics and he said something which I heard similar to: đẹp quá that means very beautiful in Vietnamese - LoL. He was surprised when I said xie xie when saying good bye.

Beijing Acrobatic Show

As suggested by a friend, my beau and I watched the Acrobatic show in Chaoyang theatre. 

Look how many umbrella she can handle with her legs

According to Xiaowei, my tour guide, there are three Acrobatic Shows in the city and this is the best one. I believe him, as I noticed visitors from around the world in the theatre lobby, including Indonesian group -:)

Five ladies simultaneously ride bicycle with the same rhythm

Show started at 7.15pm sharp. 

Hercules, he used one hand going up & down that stairs carrying the other guy

There were total 6-7 different themes during one hour show. My favorite one is the seven bikers in one huge metal ball…! 

Seven bikers in this huge metal ball

Three out of seven bikers
Four out of seven bikers

It’s so fascinating! It is much better than we expected! What a great show… It is the Asian version of Cirque du Soleil probably…

Everyone is happy at the end of the show

Next post:
Beijing, Saga continues… Great Wall...

Great Wall

No comments:

Post a Comment