Arrival in Beijing


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June 19th 2011
Published: June 20th 2011
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upon arrival
6/18-20: It didn’t really take 3 days to get here but by the time we spent 15+ hours in planes and crossed the international date line, we were had pretty much missed Sunday the 19th! We met at Richmond airport at 1:30 p.m. on Saturday, 6/18. Left there at 3:45 for Chicago. Left Chicago at 9:05 p.m. for Beijing. The flight was scheduled for 13 hours and 25 minutes and was a bit under that. We went north—over Alaska and the Arctic Ocean and Siberia (for ever, seemingly, on the map), scheduled to arrive in Beijing at 11:15 p.m. Sunday, 6/19, which we did. Nice flight, length of time considered. Everyone at least tried to sleep some. Watched movies or TV, read if they had a book. The landing was fine; we certainly got to the gate and off the plane in a timely manner. The airport was lovely—lots of lights (looked especially good because it was night, I’m sure!), clear signs, welcoming banners, and some artwork. Mr. Wang, our guide, met us, took us to our mini bus which I think will be our home for the week, and we headed to the hotel, the Grand Soluxe Tian Tan Hotel
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the wood first caught my eye, then the story being told
(http://www.tiantanhotel.com/). Of course, at night, we couldn’t see anything except ‘city’—nice lot of trees, it seemed. Not much traffic, either (almost 2 a.m. by that time). Mr. Kang, our driver, got us there smoothly but quickly. Willy (as the guide said to call him) used the half-hour ride to warmly welcome us, to remind us not to drink the water, provide some information about money and weather, and suggest that we meet at 11 in the lobby next morning. Breakfast will be served 6:30-10 and we’ll do that ‘on our own’, as we get up. So, we divvied up into our rooms, Drew and I are together, showered (always feels SOOO good after travel), checked in a bit at home, and crashed for a few hours sleep. Monday will be a busy day. Lots of walking and will end with the Peking Duck dinner!


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facing panels
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Welcome banners

as we stood in the quiet lines at immigration


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