Ni hao Beijing!!
Ok, take a deep breath. Once I step out of immigration border, my Chinese proficiency will be examined. Yup, approximately 8 hours was taken to fly from Jakarta to Beijing and with a sleepy head, I queued to have my passport stamped. After the officer put some mark on the visa, I and my family walked out and went to airport express train station.
The airport express brought us to Dongzhimen station at Line 2, then continue to change the line at Jianguomen station and take the line 1 to the last stop at Wangfujing. Here, I and family would stay 3 nights before leaving the city to next destination, Hangzhou
Wangfujing street is a street pedestrianized for shopping area. This is one of the most famous shopping centers in Beijing. A long the main road, we can have a visit to some malls or one big book store. Wangfujing’s name derives from the word “Wangfu” which means princely residence, and “Jing” which means well. The name was given in the Qing Dynasty, when ten aristocratic estates and princess residence were built after discovering a well full of sweet water (Wikipedia).
After finding our hostel, we checked in and took a rest a while. We stayed not far from the snack street, an alley which is crowded by snack vendors. Here, we can find several kinds of snack, from the mainstream to extreme! I really mean it when saying extreme. I once read from a blog that on the street we can taste fried cricket, fried scorpion, fried cocoon, even, err… fried rat and cat, can u imagine??
This small snack street is about to open every evening. Therefore, during the mid day to the evening, I and family went to Beijing South Railway first to buy train ticket to Hangzhou and spent the first day in Olympic Sport Center, the place where Bird Nest Olympic stadium and Water Cube are located (The article about these two places will be published on next posting).
So, of course you know, what was our agenda after this? When the evening came, we went back to Wangfujing street. Looks like Mongkok in Hongkong, the pedestrianized street was flooded by all tourists–both local and foreigner. Some pedestrians in variant style, casual, neat suit, were gathered walking through the streets. Some got into the mall, some brought paper bags on their hands after going shopping, some even just sat in front of the shops while enjoying the crowd.
We walked further to find the snack street entrance gate and… it’s culinary time!!