My first flight in the morning was so early, I totally knocked out for the entire hour flight to San Francisco. Arrived at San Francisco around 7:00AM and walked to the gate where my connecting flight to Beijing
was located. I managed to get one more hour of sleep on the chairs before my aunt and her friends met me at the gate. The second flight was pretty long, but I managed to sleep a bit more and keep myself busy with the movies they played on the plane. I did not enjoy sitting in the middle of the isle, it made it that much harder to try to go to the bathroom.
Arrived in Beijing around 2:20PM local time, before we could get off the air plane we all got our temperatures measured.
I think 4 people came onto our plane and pointed a temperature gun at all of our foreheads. Then we had to fill our a questionaire regarding where we've been the past 10 days and whether or not we were sick. Then we were allowed to get off the air plane to be greeted by another temperature measuring device. We lined up and turned in our questionaire that was being reviewed by an airport employee. While we were walking through there were temperature guns and cameras pointed at all of us. Swine flu is no joke in China. Then we walked into another line where they verified our visas. After that I officially entered China.
Findng the hutong we were staying at seemed to take longer than necessary. We decided to try and take the bus into the center of the city and then take a taxi to the hutong.
We got off at the last stop, apparently taxi's aren't allowed to stop in this area. We ended up finding a black taxi that overcharged us, but got us to our destination. (Sidenote, taxi drivers are not very good with addressed. You have to give them landmarks and make sure you have a cellphone to call for proper directions.) We finally reached the hutong and it was everything we had expected. It was a traditional courtyard with the old Beijing feel to it.
One of my aunt's friend's daughters is currently working in Beijing, so she met us at the hutong to take us to dinner. Finding the small hutong restuarant took some time as well since taxi drivers don't know addresses. We finally found the restaurant, where we are greeted by my Uncle (Dad's cousin). My uncle and his wife also live in Beijing, I haven't seen him since I was 1 year old. We had a lovely dinner and I tried my best to use my broken Chinese to have a conversation with my uncle and aunt.
It was a pretty long day, so we headed back to the hutong to get some sleep.