We are the lucky ones in the northern capital of China.
Arriving in Beijing – final destination – after 14 days train life, I expected to see a crowded city, lots of traffic, people wearing masks, something loud and polluted. The first steps out of the train station presented me something I didn’t expected at all. A blue sky over Beijing, sunshine and a normal amount of people and cars on the streets. How does this came ? Our honcho, her name is ‘Snow’ explained us that we are arriving just couple of days before the big 2015 China Victory Day parade. (video) It’s a military parade held along Changan Avenue, on September 3, 2015 . They are celebrating the 70th anniversary of Victory over Japan Day of the Second World War. To reduce air pollution and to make sure to have a blue sky for the parade, half of Beijing’s cars were barred from the streets and nearly 10,000 industrial firms in Beijing and in areas near and far suspended or cut production since couple of days to cut down on emissions. And it worked ! Some areas in the city centre were placed under martial law, and 850,000 “citizen guards” were deployed to ensure security within the city. We arrived in the safest city in the world for the next couple of days – Beijing.
Because of all these preparations for the parade we had to go right away to the forbidden city, tomorrow it will be closed. A complex of 72ha consists of 980 buildings, still a lot of them are closed for the public. Typical Chinese architecture, everything in yellow, red and black. Yellow is the color of the Emperor. It often decorates royal palaces, altars and temples. Red symbolizes good fortune and joy.
Trip to the wall. The great wall of China. Impressive – no other words to say.
My time in China is soon over and I have to say that the people of this country impressed me a lot. I’ve met lots of friendly and helpful people. It has been a lesson for me. They seemed to me as really curious, open-minded and generous people. They are interested in you and trying to find a solution for your demand or problem. Thanks to all of them who crossed my way in the last days. The girl who accompanied me with her umbrella under the rain, unfortunately in the wrong direction, but we figured it out and communicated with hands and translator. The man on the street who knocked at the post office door, when it was already closed, to post my postcard. Summer, my friend from the hostel, who welcomed me so warmly and helped me out during my stay in Beijing to find a sewing machine and fabrics. Amy and Matt, who I asked for the way to the 798 Art District and in the end we spend the whole afternoon together. Ting, photographer and old flatmate of my friend Agata, he showed me the company he is working for – called GogoUp – and introduced me to his bosses so that I’ve almost got a graphic design job in Beijing. And we ate the best Chinese dumplings ! Thanks a lot !