Today is Monday morning and we are packing for our return trip home. We will be leaving for the airport at 2P. The road trip to the airport will take about 1 hour. We depart at 5:20pm, non stop to Chicago.
Some interesting facts we learned about Communist China:
-The population of Beijing is 13 million people.
- Beijing has 2.85 million vehicles, a figure expected to swell by 35 percent to 3.8 million in 2010. One thousand new cars are on the road every day.
-Fuel for cars is about he same price as the US.
- A couple is allowed to have one baby. Any additional children will cost them approximately $10,000.00.
-During the Olympics, businesses (factories) will close down for two weeks to alleviate some of the congestion. All cars will be allowed into the city every other day, based on their license plate number.
-Most of the Chinese people that we saw shopping in large numbers at the malls are considered to be the wealthy Chinese.
-When shopping in department stores, you select your merchandise and a ticket is written. You take all your tickets to a cashier located throughout the store, pay your bill then return to each department to retrieve your items. During holiday shopping, this could prove to be a major hassle.
-Very few homeless people are visible on the streets. We only saw two one night while walking to dinner. The government has made every effort to have the police take the homeless to shelters.
- During this trip we saw only four people wheelchairs. Handicapped accommodations are almost non-existent.
-The best time to visit Beijing for warmer weather is early spring and fall. The summer is high tourist season.
- All the monuments had a about a 6 inch step over at each doorway. This is to keep out evil spirits.
-On every corner there is either a McDonalds, KFC or Pizza Hut.
Heard over and over in China:
-Excuse me sir, where you from?
-Watches, Rolex, Gucci, Prada, good price
-Special price for you today
-Nice gift for wife
-Chicago Bulls, Michael Jordan
Best advice from our tour guide:
Visit the outdoor food area, but don't eat anything.
Food Court - Grasshoppers on a stick
This trip was well planned, thanks to Jim. We covered allot of ground at a relaxed pace. The trip can be done in 2 less days, but you would not have anytime to relax.
Beijing and Shanghai are both beautiful cities to visit and worth the long flight to get here.
When we return home I will post a complete photo link.
Compared to Beijing, we are looking forward to returning to the balmy weather in Chicago.
Finally, Thanks Todd for the hat. It kept me warm.
View Full Photo Album.