UIBE Tour Day 2
Beijing Travel Blog› entry 6 of 7 › view all entries
This tour required the same early start as the last, so I was up to catch the coach at 7.30am. The weather was absolutely terrible so I had to use my rain jacket for the first time on my travels.
The tour consisted of a visit to a silk factory, the Summer Palace, Liulichang Street in Beijing, the Silk Market, dinner in Beijing and a trip to the Acrobatics show.
The silk factory wasn’t particularly interesting and yet another one of those unnecessary tour stops guides tend to make so they can attempt to make a quick buck on the side by flogging ‘quality’ products.
We then went to the Summer Palace. I’d really been looking forward to going but the weather was so awful it wasn’t worth looking around, plus we’d only been given an hour there, which really isn’t enough time to take it in.
A group of us decided to hire pedalos and go ‘boating’ on the lake. This was definitely the best way to spend the time we had.... I ended up on a pedalo with Jakob, Martin, Fabian, Heidi and Alex. With Jakob on board I was destined for a funny trip and he didn’t disappoint. Fabian also entertained with his great rendition of La Bamba.
Lunch followed the Summer Palace after which we were taken to Liulichang Street in Beijing, which is a famous art and antiques area. There were some really interesting shops but again not enough time to look around properly, so Amy and I decided to head to a tea shop, but there wasn’t enough time for tea!
Next stop was the Silk Market. Despite the name, this market actually has only a few stalls selling silk. Most of the items there are fake designer goods.
One of the Danish guys, Nikolai, bought a bullet-proof police vest and balaclaver. He then proceeded to strip down to his underwear outside the Silk Market to don his new outfit. He then ran like a lunatic around the busy car park, stopping traffic and posing with some rather stunned tourists.
I thought it was hilarious and reminded me of someone pretty close to home.... my nut-job brother, Martin! But bro be warned, when you get here next year just remember that the Chinese security guards didn’t appear to share in the humour.
Nikolai’s antics continued back on the coach which made for an amusing journey to the restaurant for dinner.
The Acrobatics show followed dinner. It was awesome! I’ve never seen such flexibility in other humans!! The pictures I took aren’t great but try to imagine being able to climb and descend stairs whilst balancing on one hand, or spinning 10 plates whilst lifting 2 other performers and spinning around. Truly amazing!
After the show, the coach took us back to UIBE and Amy and I headed straight to the campus supermarket to buy some beers.
After a shower and a quick change into my new superman t-shirt, I then went to Ben and Daniel’s apartment where a mini party had started.
The group then headed out to the Shisha bar and another very funny evening was enjoyed by all.
Once through the campus gate I suddenly thought I was an acrobat, so ran at top (drunken) speed across the grass and threw myself into a spectacular forward roll. Given it had been raining hard all day this wasn’t the most sensible move to make. When I stood up I had mud all down the back of my new t-shirt. Despite washing it 3 times, the mud refused to come out....How impressive is that?! Superman managed to last all of 1 evening in my company!!