5 Things That... Made me happy:
1. Hutongren Courtyard Hotel. Cheap, clean and an amazing location. Great staff and a must if you are in Beijing. http://www.hutongren.com.cn
2. $2.50 Mojitos from the tea stand 50m from the hotel.
3. The labyrinth of the Hutongs (Hoo-tong) and how old and beautifully ugly they are. So great just wandering aimlessly through them and stumbling across ones that are built 700+ years ago. Still inhabited and functional.
4. Breakfast for less than $1AUD.
5. Playing with the Hutong puppies at my hotel!
That made me sad:
1. Greg leaving to go back to Shanghai.
2. Pollution in the air, waterways, and streets.
3. How overweight people were especially compared to Shanghai.
4. The vast selection of Asian style fast food and how many people were eating it.
5. Seeing half a man. He was literally cut off at the waist. Still trying to work out the physiology of that.
That frustrated me:
1. The forbidden palace was so packed. 5000 people through the gates before 10am. I was there at opening but it was so packed I did the main bits and left. Too many sweaty bodies jammed up against each other. (Showered as soon as I got back to the hotel eeeww eeeww eeeww!!)
2. How slowly everyone walks.
3. Google maps DOES NOT WORK in China. Well it does but it is highly inaccurate. Use iPhone or Bing or a plain old fashioned paper one from Lonely Planet instead.
4. Trying to order a Diet Coke and even though I was saying the right words they weren't the right tone so they had no idea what I was saying. So close yet so far.
That made me laugh:
1. Public Transport wardens holding signs in English but could not speak or understand a word of it
2. The proliferation of shisha pipes at every restaurant. Don't Chinese people smoke enough?
3. People fishing, swimming and sitting on the walls of the lake even though many signs say 'no fishing, swimming or climbing' and police standing there watching the people doing exactly what they are not meant to be doing..
4. All of the tour groups with frustrated tour guides walking around waving a flag whilst their group wore stupid hats and wandered off holding up the group. Some things you don't need to hear in English to know what is going on.
5. Bargaining with the Tuk Tuk driver to pay 50RMB instead of 80RMB. He only wanted 5RMB I mistook the words. No wonder he was pumped when I gave him the cash!
5+1. A mother of a teenage boy making him have a photo with me at the Forbidden Palace. He was so ashamed! She was so excited that I agreed!