Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Beijing, part 1: Welcome to China

Our day began at 4:45 p.m.

A couple hours later, the flight attendants woke us up just after three o'clock, as we entered China. One hour behind schedule.

h1 - Finally to China!

Nothing but clouds below since Alaska. A breakfast/dinner later, the clouds parted to reveal a patchwork of fields. The pervasive grid in the US is rather unique in the world. Here, small areas are gridded, but no more than a few square miles together.

h2 - Yin Yang Field

The Chinese Customs' logo is a key crossed with the medical snakes-around-a-staff symbol. Gatekeepers of health.

The flight attendant told us that most of the plane would be transferring to Shanghai, so we didn't need to worry about being so late. They wouldn't leave without us.

h3 - Beijing Cleared Neighborhood

h4 - Landing in Beijing

Chunlin was quite tired. So was I, a bit. Perhaps the excitement of being in a new country gave me some adrenaline.

h6 - China Eastern Takeoff

Beijing has the best smog in the world.
h5 - Beijing Sun

We met with Chunlin's younger brother, Chunyu. We gave him some duty-free cigarettes we had just bought, plus a few gifts from the rest of the family. Suddenly we were travelling lighter. He gave us a cellphone and cash.

We said our goodbyes and hurry hurry hurried 'cross the Beijing Airport. We arrived at gate A12 ten minutes before our plane was supposed to leave. No, no. It's delayed. They still needed to deplane. Then why did none of the departure boards bother to mention this?!

It only took ten minutes to load our plane. 737. Blue seats. 7:05, pulled back from the gate. It was finally starting to get dark outside. We'd been in daylight since the day before.

No comments: