Published: May 24th 2012May 24th 2012
I woke up early morning and after organizing my bad, which is a joke, because I cannot figure it out how to find the things I need. I took the subway to go to LamaTemple again. This time I was one of the first people to get there.
The building is impressive, big; all the ceilings are painted with amazing colorful details. It is crowed even early in the morning. I was moved to see a kid of 2 bowing with dedication trying to mirror his mom. Very funny as well.
This temple is very interesting because people go to pray and they burn incenses and then they pass, after bowing to their deity, from one temple to the other one that is behind. And there is always another one behind. At least I count 4 buildings. They never stay still and meditate in a fit place with their legs cross or nothing like that. It is a marathon or an itinerary spiritual event. That make me a little bit dizzy without a breakfast in my belly.
I went to Fairy Su restaurant, a vegetarian place next to the Temple. I have a nice Mango juice following it by a simple meal. They had available only 2 numbers of combos from the vast list of things in their menu. But the disappointed aspect was the service. It took forever to make a bowl of rice with a salad of hot potato in a mild brown sauce. Maybe I was starving but I was the only client at 10. 30 am and I can believe they took them so long to bring me that.
The art district is a huge place. Full of modern restaurants, bars, and galleries. There are sculptures all around in the middle of the streets. Most of them are very interesting. It took me a while to find the left hand but I was very pleased to see the immense empty with cage. An interactive piece of art that expects you enter to the cage and you experience the idea of being in captivity like a bird. There are nice photographers showing their work as well. I discover one artist that takes most of their photos black and white but he just pick some elements to color them. I wish I were able to buy something from him. It was not so expensive, but somebody told me that you cannot take painting or art outside China without a long process. So I decided to buy a small notebook with one of his pictures instead.
Coming back from the art district 798 I saw many people doing construction work, it seem this city has always something more to build. The 798 area is quite far from the metro stations, you should combine with the 401 bus, in the bus there is also a woman giving directions before each stops in Chinese and English.
I went to take the metro in order to get to visit a filmmaker from US that she is studying here at the Beijing Film Academy. But the line for bags check in, a mandatory here each time you get the metro, was 2 blocks long at least. During rush hour you should avoid the metro. So I found a Mall called, Galerias, near by and I decided to wait for an hour to be able to meet my friend in a very western area.
The malls here are big, modern and impressive. You have the feeling that this could be any place rather than my idea of China. More stylish than any mall you have seen. I decided to buy a book, I am getting bored of Lonely Planet guide. There were not many books in English, but I found one, pretty heavy, from an Chinese author that it seem to be a best seller of all times here. Its called Brothers. It talks about the process of transaction and transformation of Chinese from the perspective of one family. I have just read the chapter one. It is promising. It starts with the story of a teen that was found spying women's butts on a public bathroom!
Then finally I met my new US filmmaker friend. She moved here because she likes Chinese movies and she wants to write for this growing industry. She is working on her first feature project and it sounds promising. A horror movie…even I do not like this genre I will do my best to watch her work.
She updated me of how expats lives here. The difficulties to date guys for a Western woman, and the unfair situation for men. Which is much-much more easy for them. Locals likes wester men. She is very beutiful and I am sure that any guy will be delight to meet here in US, but here she feels the ugly duck :)
Also she share with me the news about a foreign men molesting girls. There are videos showing this all around the net. So now the consequences of this is that Chinese population is quite concern to be around foreigns. This sad event opens all their rage and prejudice about white people in their country. It is not so bad on women but all of us has to be ready to show passports to authorities that are searching of this guy and also very picky trying to find people that is working not legal or staying more than their visa says they are allow.
My day finish in a rush and sad, I missed the last train in the connection from line 10 to line 5…I needed to go out at 11.30 pm and find a taxi again…oh no, again….Thanks to my filmmaker friend that speaks amazing Chinese and I put her on the phone with the driver, he got me to my hutong for 25Y L (it seem that they charge you 3Y more during the night)