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What Was I Thinking?!? Whilst in a foreign country, it is recommended to try new foods, learn the language, and alienate as many locals as possible.

The Trip Here

CHINA | Saturday, 29 August 2009 | Views [461] | Comments [1]

The trip here was so long. The night before I only had one hour of sleep as my friend Miriam just had to take me to see Inglorious Basterds one last time before I left. Not that I was complaining, mind you. But I was so exhausted the whole trip. The first flight from Dayton to Newark was nothing. We got there easily and in plenty of time so we had a hard time trying to stay awake before our plane got there.

Then we boarded the plane to Beijing. This flight was 13 hours and 45 minutes long. It was not as bad as I thought it was going to be. It was no walk in the park, to be sure. However, there were individual screens for each seat that you could use for your entertainment. It had everything from a map of where the plane was and how long it was going to be, etc. to movies to video games and t.v. shows! I slept most of the way, but I still got in the movie Fargo, which I had never seen, and Back to the Future, which I hadn't seen in a while. There were a lot more that I wanted to watch, but I was so tired, I could barely keep my eyes open. I got the window seat which was nice, but it was sunny outside the whole flight so I kept the screen drawn for most of the flight. Except when we flew over the Arctic. Dad said we'd be flying over that because it's shorter than going around the world horizontally. It was pretty amazing looking outside and seeing HUGE floes of ice beneath us. Once we flew over China, though, it was pretty anticlimactic. It looked like flying over any other land. That is, until we landed.

The Beijing airport is enormous and confusing. Apparently, there are three different terminals in completely different places. We had to get from 3 to 2, which was confusing, but we made it. Then some guy we thought was being nice helped us checked in and get our luggage on its way. I suspected he was going to want money and I was very right, but I blame that on Sarah as it was she who was roped in to using him first. So I ended up having to give him one of my American $20s because she lost her money and I hadn't exchanged mine yet. So basically I got ripped off. I was pretty pissed off. We finally made it through the whole airport though and to our gate. Had it been on time, we would've made it just in time for boarding. However, our plane ended up being, like, 2 hours late. That was annoying, but they gave us free food so that's nice.

Mr. Ted Wang, the guy in charge of the program, was there to pick us up. The drive was at least 30 minutes. I basically passed out and so did Sarah. But before I did, we got to see a lot of Dalian and how Chinese driving is. First of all, Chinese driving is crazy. It's really rather fluid, but they can't stay in one lane for more than two minutes, I swear. If you can make it one whole trip without the driver honking their horn, it's a great day. If you can make it one whole trip without hearing someone honk for no apparent reason, you've gone deaf. Second, it's a huge city. Our dormitories are on the outskirts of town so it took a while to get through it. It's interesting that most of the tall buildings here are apartments. It was also weird that the radio station Mr. Wang was playing had the Chinese rendition (sung in English) of Silent Night. It was really surreal.

Then we finally got to our apartments. They're really nice. I think we're only staying here for a week until campus opens up and our quarantine is over. I wish I could take this room with me though. It's freakin nice. I got my own mini-kitchen and a nice big bedroom with huge windows. It's lovely. The only problem I have with it is that the bathroom only has a bathtub instead of a shower. I'm not much of a bath person, but if that's my only complaint, then I shouldn't be complaining, right?

Anyways, it's 9:25 am here. I'm gonna get dressed and maybe go exploring. I'll see what I can do about pictures. No guarantees though. I don't know how much excitement I'm gonna get in to this first week.

Tags: airport, apartments, bath, beijing, dalian, driving, silent night, trip to china

Comments

1

Well, since I'm not going to see you in person until December 20, watching Nazis get obliterated with me was the sensible solution.

I'm glad your plane trip wasn't too shabby and that you have some accommodations in the meantime.

I hope everything continues to go well!

  Miriam Aug 29, 2009 12:23 PM

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