Wednesday, September 24, 2014

National Museum of China

Completed in 1959, 10 years after the revolution, it is now a modern airy museum located on the east side of Tienanmen Square.

The entrance ticket is free, but to get a ticket, if you are a local turn left and show your identity card, if you are foreign turn right and show your passport or a copy of your passport. They know who you are.

The cafe in the main foyer could be anywhere in the world, except one thing stood out.  Two people were eating sandwiches with chopsticks, nibbling around the edges. They must think we are so uncouth, touching food with our hands.

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Sunshine Kitchen on a Rainy Day

The Sunshine Kitchen is a hip modern restaurant in Beijing.  Most of the people dining were local Chinese. It has a glossy bilingual menu book with pictures of each dish.  The young staff are dressed in black, and have headsets and call in your order to the kitchen. A short time later the printed order is place on the edge of the table.

Food takes time, and it comes a dish at a time. The waiters pass by often and quietly check the order on the table, and move on.

After the first dish, our other dishes did not come, and we attracted our waiter's attention and she spoke to the kitchen again over the headset. Nothing happened.  At least two other tables had the same issue, people were getting angry, standing and jabbing their watches.

More waiters passed by, checking the ticket.

Finally, a different waiter appeared, noticed what was going on, picked up our ticket and went to the kitchen counter, and shouted and banged on the counter.  Miraculously the food appeared.

They were having a bad night.

Thursday, September 11, 2014

The New Forbidden City

We know where David Cameron and Barack Obama live, but where does Xi Jinping live and work?

Sources suspect when he is in Beijing, he is in Zhongnanhai, in central Beijing, an enclosed walled area immediately west of the Forbidden City.

It is a perfect site, 600 hectares, half of the area is cover by two lakes, secure and centrally located near the office.  It seems likely there is a tunnel from the Zhongnanhai compound to the Great Hall of the People just across the main east-west road Chang-An.