Ready to go!

Donnerstag, 31.07.2014

Today will be quite a long day:
I leave Stuttgart in the afternoon, fly to Copenhagen and will be in Beijing on the 1st of Aug.

My bags are packed, the tour guide and study books in my handbag, only have to check in and say goodbye. With enough time at the airport we went for lunch and I bought some reading material for the 13h flight. It wasn't easy to say goodbye, since my parents will also be leaving on their own journey this year and I won't be able to see them for quite a while!

 

First Day in Beijing!

Freitag, 01.08.2014

Hot, Crowded and Grey!

After my arrival at Beijing Airport one of my supervisors guided me to my new apartement for the next two months. It took us about 45 minutes by car to get there which was a fantastic opportunity to see some parts of Beijing for the first time. First impression: never would want to drive here!! ;)
It does not really seem like they have any traffic rules at all, however I haven't seen any accidents either, so I guess it works for them. 
The apartment is located near a subway station and lots of little diners. The area seems quite nice comparing to other parts of Beiing and lots of international students live here. I share the kitchen, living room and bathroom with 3 other students. I actually only really know my roomate Amanda from Malaysa, since she is able to speak chinese and! english fluently :) The other two students I do not really know, we only say hello, they mostly keep to their rooms and only speak chinese
(I think there from a different city in China).
In the first evening I tried to stay awake for quite a while so I wouldn't suffer from the yetlag to much.

Friday I had an orientation day and the basics of Beijing were introduced to me. I received a chinese sim card and my train ticket (both is sooooo cheap here! Germany should follow China's example concerning this topic!!!)

Afterwards I had a great lunch (lamb yummyy) with my supervisors and got to know the center a bit. Since it was really!!! hot and I was still a bit tired from the flight I stayed in at night and sat in front of my city map to plan my first sightseeing day in Beijing!:)

1. thing to buy: FAN! simply everybody has one with them here and you do need it :)

 

Tuanjiehu Park & Sanlitun Yashow

Samstag, 02.08.2014

So today I thought I would take it easy, sleep long and then enjoy the day at Tuanjiehu Park:

Did not really take me long to get there, but also couldn't find it at first :D
It can be really hard to find your way through Beijing, since there are only very little directions in english. Another thing that took me by suprise was that almost nobody is able to speak english at all (except of course the people trying to sell things on the street to foreigners).
Today it had about 36-38°C which did not make it easy to walk around without sweating like...
In the beginning it was really hard to adjust because everything is just so different here.
People would stare at me with no sense of shame, just stare, stare and stare. I do understand that I am not asian and belong to the minority over here, but I would have thought with all the media in the world, nobody really pays attention to races anymore - they would even start taking pictures!!

I actually have gotten used to it, just have to go with it, sometimes they might even ask you to take a picture with them ;) why not....
As you can see the sky is almost always grey in Beijing! Only when it rains for a whole day, you will be able to see the blue sky - a bit of a shame, considering the beautiful pictures you can take with such a boring sky....;)
This park is considered as one of the smallest parks in Beijing and I still spend a whole afternoon wandering through it - even got to see people doing Tai Chi (THE THING I WANTED TO SEE IN CHINA!!!:)) & dancing on the streets. People here would also just gather at any corner of the city, grab a chai and table and just play cards all day long. I guess this also has something to do with the health care here. Old people try to stay fit as long as they can! Medical support is very expensive!

In the evening I visited Sanlitun Yashow - Clothing Market. It was very frightening for me to experience how desperate people want to sell you cheap clothes. I did buy a few things but do not really like the way of standing there and bairgaining with them! Everybody should experience it once, but I'm not sure if I would do it again. Got some nice traditional food on the way home and really needed a shower after the day I had :)