Enjoy Spontanaity, and Most Importantly the Wholesome People you Meet Along the Way
May 27, 2011
There are two faces to Beijing. There is the modern, center city that we are used to in the United States. And then there is a more dilapidated, poor area. What is strange is that a poor area can be right next to a very vibrant area. There can be for instance, an upscale hotel or restaurant and then not even a half a block away a very poor urban neighborhood.
Since I am interested in getting the full experience I have been exploring the other side of Beijing in my free time.
So what have I found?
Delicious inexpensive food, peace, happiness, and wonderful people.
Since I am a growing young man I demand a lot of food. So last night Aamir and I went to a street side food vendor for Kabab. It was delicious! We ate Chicken, beef, or perhaps something else(dog, cat?) Either way they were sooo good. While at this restaurant a little boy was playing on the street and he came over to us with his ping-pong ball and started playing catch. We stayed for a while and played with him, and I am sure the pictures will show a little piece of joy that all of us should never lose.
I wish I could have spoken to him, but he was babbling in Chinese at us!
One thing that I need is me time. I have had a little trouble doing so with all of the things we have been doing. But today we had some downtime so I put a few yuan in my pocket, and put on my running shoes and went for a run. At the end of my run I was walking through a neighborhood and saw two people eating at a restaurant who looked like they spoke english. Luckily they did and I asked them if the food was good. They ordered for me (in chinese) and I sat with them and learned a lot about why they were in Beijing. They both have been here for 4 years and are working for a company that develops apps for the Iphone. They said that one of there free apps made it to the top 10, which is really a big deal. They also gave me some good insights about Beijing, and we chatted for a good 45 minutes. They were really surprised to see me in that area and asked what I was doing, as they see a lot of foreigners there.
I don’t know what it was called, but I had egg, pork, cucumbers, and sauce over rice. It was DELICIOUS! And it only cost 10 yuan($1.50 usd) with the green tea.
So the more I go out exploring the more I am realizing that when you can, meet people! Great things will happen, and you will learn so much. This may be my favorite part about traveling, the people you meet and the stories that you hear about their experiences. In fact they invited me to their companies party where they rented out a hotel with over 100 people going. I would have loved to go but this evening we leave for our overnight train ride to Xi’an.
One thing they did leave me with is that you can not fight, or plan anything in Beijing. Throw any plans out of the window because they will for sure change. And embrace anything that happens to you when your here.
I can not wait to travel to Xi’an tonight!
I’ll hopefully have a lot to say when we return in two days.