'Take material object as the standard'!!!!
Beijing Travel Blog› entry 33 of 35 › view all entries
After our expedition to the wall we decided to take it upon ourselves to find and explore Beijing's Natural History Museum (not quite as grand, but Lonely Planet said it had pickled human genitals which we thought atleast would be interesting!). It took a bit of a trek upon which we found a picturesque Chinese stle shopping street - with a H&M and Starbucks - but we found the museum in the end (and it was free, bonus!)! We explored the many rooms and levels (unfortunately no pickled human parts) and found that it had had a bit of a makeover since the Beijing Lonely Planet was published. There were still plenty of interesting things to see including Dinosaur skeletons and pickled weird fish in jars! This made for an enjoyable day out which we finished off with a browse of the shops and a coffee at Starbucks!
Jim woke up the next day not feeling great with his persistant and increasing rib pain and bleeding belly button. So we decided it was time to seek medical advice (not really as dramatic as we're making it out to be!). We found a hospital with a wing dedicated to foreigners and joined the back of a line of a rather efficient systm. After some prodding and poking and an ultrasound scan, Jim was given the all clear and a bottle of alcohol for his belly button (apparantly belly buttons can just secrete blood! Not sure I'm convinced!). Feeling relieved (very relieved) we headed to Jade Islet part of Beihei park for a nice stroll around (and to check out the Buddhist monument at the top) where we were hounded like celebrities by young Chinese men (they must have thought I was Sam Worthington, my new favourite action star!!), wanting us to be photographed with them (we were so sought after that one group stopped whilst another group was photographing us and waited so they could get one too!). This wasn't the first time we had experienced this treatment! We were also snapped on the Great Wall (apparantly its normal for people in China do this!!)
We planned on one of our last days in Beijing to cycle the Hutongs (basically a Chinese alleyway) however, were completely unsucessful in locating a bicycle hire shop, so decided to walk them instead! It was nice to get out of the hustle and bustle of Beijing and down some of its back streets and we ended up at the Bell and Drum Towers (we didn't go in them though as it was getting late).
On our final full day in Beijing we got up early (after days of trying) and finally made it to the Chairman Mao Memorial Hall before it closed at 12 noon! We joined the humungous queue of incredibly rude Chinese folk (their method of queueing being VERY different from ours. Bearing in mind that's something we're quite literally the best at, we showed them how it's done!) which considering it's size actually moved quite quickly. We made it into the memorial hall where we viewed yet another embalmed man (we didn't think he was real! He didn't look as healthy as Uncle Ho! More plasticy!!)! With that out of the way we went to the cinema to see 'Clash of the Titans' (awesome!) then returned to the hotel and packed our bags ready for the flight to India in the morning!