Jump to content




Help Support AmtrakTrains.com by donating using the link above or becoming a Supporting Member.

Photo

Baltimore to Beijing -- Round the world part 2


  • Please log in to reply
2 replies to this topic

#1 MARC Rider

MARC Rider

    Conductor

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPip
  • 946 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Baltimore. MD

Posted 27 April 2018 - 04:15 PM

Well, I guess I should finish up my trip report.  No, I wasn't being held by the Chinese because I was taking aerial pictures of the Beijing airport.    It was simply because I had other things to do and never got around to finishing.  Better late than never.
 
When I left off, I was enjoying lunch at a hot pot restaurant next to the hotel.  That was Wednesday.  I had left Washington at lunch time Monday and arrived in Beijing in the middle of the afternoon on Tuesday.  After lunch, we started with the meetings.  For some strange reason, we mostly missed out on the famous Beijing smog.However, on Thursday, we got a little taste.  The air pollution app on my phone said we were code red for PM10 (fine particulates.)  Fortunately, I was inside a conference room.

Here's some pictures from the club level of our hotel, First on Wednesday, then on Thursday:
 
WEDNESDAY:

 

 

Attached File  IMG_0055.JPG   110.08KB   7 downloads

 

 

THURSDAY:

 

Attached File  IMG_0093.JPG   120.04KB   6 downloads

 

Attached File  IMG_0094.JPG   110.17KB   6 downloads

 

 

The van came and picked us up, but the traffic was so bad, we might as well have walked.  On the way back from the meeting on Wednesday evening, it took us an hour to get back to the hotel, should have been a 10 minute drive in normal traffic.  Both the conference location and our hotel were on the Third Ring Road.  The Beijing ring roads are like the illegitimate love child of the Washington Beltway, and the I-410 Loop in San Antonio,  and The Kennedy expressway in Chicago.  

 

Attached File  IMG_0086.JPG   201.59KB   5 downloads

 

Attached File  IMG_0090.JPG   121.12KB   5 downloads

 

The next day was a little better, or at least our driver figured out which side streets to use.  The urban landcape of Beijing is a hybrid of the density of Manhattan with the sprawl of Chicago.

 

Attached File  IMG_0099.JPG   184.33KB   6 downloads

 

Attached File  IMG_0102.JPG   133.89KB   6 downloads

 

The conference was held at a hotel run by one of the outlying provinces, noted for its scenery and interesting minority communities.  Image the State of New Mexico, say, owning a hotel in Washington, and featuring "typical" New Mexico decor and cuisine.  They served us lunch, which was a buffet of the provincial cuisine.  One of the translators got in line behind me and said she would ask what the items were, "I'll make sure you don't get any dog!"  I think she was pulling my leg, as I looked up the cuisine of that part of China, and neither dog meat nor cat meat is on the menu there.  The food wasn't bad for a buffet line.  Then, back to the meetings.

 

Attached File  IMG_0134.JPG   404.36KB   6 downloads

 

Two things about Chinese conferences (at least those with us barbarian westerners):  The first is the covered teacup that comes with every seat.  When we arrived in the morning, there were dried tea leave is the cup.  Then there was a man who came around all day with a large Thermos jug full of hot water who kept the cup full.  Fortunately there were enough breaks so that getting up to use the restroom wasn't a problem.  The other thing is that it's important to have your PowerPoint slides translated.  As you can see above, this is not as easy as you think.  I think I understand what these guys were trying to say.  I hope the translations that were done for our slides were useful to our hosts.  During the conference, we all had headphones with simultaneous translations.  This seemed to work all right.  I will say that there were a lot of the young Chinese professionals who spoke excellent English, som better than I hear on the streets of Washington!

 

We got back to the hotel in a more timely hour on Thursday evening.  After an enjoyable happy hour on the club level, we went out and braved the Beijing subway (see, there is some rail content here! :) ) to go to the Silk Market, where we enjoyed haggling for souvenirs.  I found a couple of very nice cashmere shawls for my wife and daughter, and a nice covered teacup.

 

With that, it was back to bed and to get ready to fly home on Friday.  But we finally got to see some sights, aside from conference rooms and hotels, and that will wait for the next, and final installment.

 

To be continued.

Attached Files


Edited by MARC Rider, 27 April 2018 - 04:19 PM.

  • oregon pioneer likes this

#2 Bob Dylan

Bob Dylan

    Engineer

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 17,309 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Austin Texas
  • Interests:Passenger Trains/Travel/Sports/Gov't/ Politics/History/Reading/
    Movies/Music/Space-Ancient Aliens

Posted 27 April 2018 - 05:46 PM

Nice report and pics! The "Smog" pics remind md of LA,Houston and Mexico City in the bad old days!

Look forward to the next Chapter of a Baltimore Boy in China!
  • oregon pioneer likes this
"There's Something About a Train! It's Magic!"-- 1970s Amtrak Ad
 "..My heart is warm with the friends I make,and better friends I'll not be knowing,
Yet there isn't a train I wouldn't take,No matter where its going!.." -Edna St. Vincent Millay

#3 Mystic River Dragon

Mystic River Dragon

    Engineer

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 1,825 posts
  • Gender:Female

Posted 28 April 2018 - 11:58 AM

Interesting report--thanks! I always like learning about other parts of the world, especially places i probably will never get to.


Edited by Mystic River Dragon, 28 April 2018 - 11:58 AM.

  • oregon pioneer likes this




0 user(s) are reading this topic

0 members, 0 guests, 0 anonymous users