Beijing: A Day in the Market and The Temple of Heaven
(Photos will be added tomorrow morning.)
To start our first full day in the city of Beijing, we packed into a public bus down the road from the hostel. We were on our way to the Dirt Market, a local outdoor market. One memorable moment from that trip is that the bus broke down. The group adapted well to the challenge presented to us. Some of us got on another bus on the same route. The rest of the group rode the original bus, limping along until we were within close walking distance of the market.
Students tested their bargaining skills shopping for all sorts of goods: jewelry, board games, beads, and small works of art.
Later we ate lunch at a great place that served us a wide variety of food. Some quotes from the meal include: “I love squid!” , “Why don’t we have eggplant like this back home?” And “Really that candy dish was fried banana?”
Students explored a local grocery store where looked to see the unusual foods and the ways that foods are displayed and packaged for sale in China. Mostly they purchased candy and other snacks for later.
Then we were off to the Temple of Heaven, a historic site where the emperors of the Ming and Qing dynasty would have participated in rituals that would lead to a good harvest.
After touring through the temples, students spent time in the park playing a game similar to hacky sack, dancing beside the locals, and journaling.
A subway ride home returned us to the hostel for a quick turn around before dinner. We went to a very tasty dumpling restaurant a few blocks from the hostel. What a great first day in the city!
Students are still getting adjusted to the timezone. Some were even starting to fall asleep at the dinner table, so we headed back to the hostel for an early night to bed to rest up for a big day tomorrow of hiking on The Great Wall of China.