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Friday, September 16, 2005

 Summer Palace

Today we did way too much shopping for this point in the trip. Now we
are going to have to carry it for the next two weeks. We started out
this morning going to the Pearl Market where we bought matching pearl
necklaces for mother and daughter, some table runners, some bracelets,
and a 2 GB thumbdrive to exchange pictures with other couples. We then
went to the Beijing zoo where we saw 2 Panda bears and nothing more. I
don't know if there was more to see or not, but that's all I really
cared about. It was neat to see these endangered animals but the living
conditions for them seemed pretty inadequate. Of course we had to buy
some more stuff here. We then went to the Summer Palace, as if the
Forbidden City wasn't enough for the Emporer, he had to have a getaway
where he forced the people to dig a lake. Here, there was the only
Beijing 2008 Olympic store that we've seen. We bought Mikayla an Olympic
hat to wear during the event in 3 years. When we left the palace through
a side gate, we were swamped by people selling all kinds of knockoffs
including Olympic T-shirts. I bought one for $6 only to find out later
someone else got one for $2. Buying anything was a big mistake cause
once they saw I had money and was willing to spend, they surrounded me
and wouldn't leave me alone, very persistent. When we got back to the
hotel, 6 more families in our group showed up. We will be up to 11
families tommorow for the tour of the Forbidden City and the Great Wall.
In about 41 hours, we will have Mikayla.


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