Surviving Beijing

1. Crossing roads: wait until the green man is flashing, which means run the gauntlet of crazed taxi drivers who consider it double points for pedestrians and triple for westerners!
2. Queuing: actually "ku'ing" is a martial art, only the fastest, meanest, kick ass survive (& the metro underground at rush hour - well it's your funeral).
3 Staring; hey, it's their country, their allowed! You may even be asked to be photographed with them (johny foriegner that you are).
4. Hocking up the phlegm: old blokes, young blokes, women , kids - they are all at it. Where ever they are! This must have taken over from ping pong as the national sport.
5. "Hello, do you speak Engrish": the answer to this is "non, francais" otherwise the nice smiley 'language students' will want to take you to a tea shop to practise their English with you. Oh yes and a tat shop and a museum and a restaurant and a ... well you get the drift.
6. There are nine million bicycles in Beijing: and they're all on the sidewalk, again triple points for western tourists!
7. Peking Duck: crispy aromatic duck it is not! (They just can't seem to cook Chinese food properly over here, not like we get at home). One (top duck) restaurant over here has perfected a super healthy recipe, the roast duck skin is dipped in sugar before eating it. The place is called 'Da Dong' which is coincidently the last sound your heart makes after the fourth piece.
8. If it lives, it's edible: snake on a stick, scorpian on a stick, sea horse on a stick, starfish on a stick... Donghuamen street 'snack street' the place to go for weird outdoor dining.
9. Smile at the locals: I think it freaks 'em out a little bit. especially the army guards (on every street corner).
10. Lists don't all have ten entries you know, frankly I am amazed you made it this far through this drivel. Go put the kettle on, 'strictly come celebrity get me back in Hello magazine on ice' is on in 5 mins...
0 Responses