Around Beijing

It snowed the night before we arrived, and the temperatures hovered not much above freezing for our stay. However, it didn’t inhibit us intrepid travelers, we just layered the clothing and off we went!

Some images of modern Beijing, to include the birds nest and dragon building built for the 2012 Olympics.

In the past, men have retired at 55 and women at 50, and they get out in the parks to exercise, do Tai-chi, play games, and visit with one another.

This group of seniors was particularly energetic!

Beijing is the most populous capital city in the world, but it is very orderly, clean, and has lots of green space and trees. It is flat, and laid out on a grid system N-S and E-W (in accordance with Fung shut) with very wide avenues at the axis and wide streets elsewhere.

Spring blossoms around the city.

Leaving the main thoroughfares and entering the hutongs (older and more traditional neighborhoods) the streets become narrow and the houses smaller. However, they are still built in traditional Chinese style with the parents occupying the north section, and the other buildings surround a small courtyard. Bathrooms are communal, and this is the reason that many of the younger generation prefer to move to a high-rise in the suburbs.

We visited this lady’s home and were served jasmine tea while she told us about her life. The art of painting inside glass bottles and globes has been passed down from generations, and her niece is the latest to practice this art form.

The city’s history dates back three millennia, and Beijing has been the capital for the most of 800 years.

Love these framed in tuk-tuks!

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