Tuesday, April 12, 2005

From my hotel window, I saw the sun rise thru the veil like Beijing haze one more once... it was magic.
Zia Jian and Xie Xie, Beijing. Min tian jian. Wa hwe la la in Mei Guo and I hope wa hwe la la to Zhong Guo (translation: good bye and thank you, Beijing. I will see you. I am back in America and I will be back to China...or I think that's what I am saying!!)Posted by Hello

Our last group shot on the morning of departure. Everyone had mixed feelings, we wanted to stay and see more but we were also a bit homesick.  Posted by Hello

On our very last (whole) day in Beijing, we visited a silk factory. Here is the group learning the difference between a good quality silk worm cocoon and an ok quality silk cocoon. Posted by Hello

This machine threads and spools the silk from the cocoons. Cool, huh? Posted by Hello

Sara and Allison making the silk cocoons into soft thin sheets. With 150 of these ethereal silk spider web sheets, they make the most amazing bed spreads. Posted by Hello

This is the finished product. The softest and most dangerous bed covers in the world...I would never get up to get to work if my sheets were this soft. Posted by Hello

On our last lunch together, (Day 7..I think) we ate Pekin Duck. According to our tour guide David, there are 3 things one must accomplish when traveling to Beijing: Climb the wall (check), see the Peking Opera (check) and eat Pekin duck (hat trick!!).  Posted by Hello

Here is what our Pekin Duck dinner looked like. They served the sliced duck in the cute little duck shaped platters (see picture). They served the head as well which made our two vegetarian travelers turn all sorts of colors. In this picture, Brad and Ben are trying to cope with this feast. No matter how much we ate, we never seemed to make a dent on the food. See for yourself (from the bottom and clockwise: Pekin duck, deep fried chicken with lemon sauce, brocoli and pinenuts, I think some sort of pork dish, in the middle you see sliced beef, bean paste sauce, pink lotus root with shallots I think, steamed bokchoy, fish with Chinese cabbage, green beans, next to the Pekin duck deep fried shrimp...and that's just the food on this side of the table) Posted by Hello

I had a chance to stroll through Beijing's antique market on our last day. The kids all rolled their eyes when I asked if they wanted to come with me! So they all returned to the hotel and I got to hang out on my own for a bit. It turned out to be one of my favorite outings cause of all the old fashion tea shops and tiny little traditional Chinese medicine apothecaries. I saw beautifully carved antique furniture and all sort of odds and ends that came from old Buddhist temples. Posted by Hello