Monday, 9 April 2012

China Visit - Opening Cermony, Confucius Institute and Wangfujing Street

Saturday 31st March.
Early rise and to breakfast in the school canteen, eggs, bacon, cereal and fruit on offer, which was supplemented by the many items the lads brought with them. All are fed and watered and looking forward to the day ahead.
A wander into the local hutong opens our eyes to what a poor neighbourhood looks like and how the people function, everybody very busy going about their morning buying and selling.
We attend the official opening ceremony at Huiwen Middle School where words of welcome and gifts are exchanged with the school principal. A tour of the school follows which includes the school museum. Obligatory photographs are taken. A visit to the computer room allows everyone to send e-mails, but access was not that easy and many sites are out of reach as  censorship is firmly in place. This blog was out of bounds also.
Lunch was consumed at the school and very tasty indeed, all agree that the food issue will not be a problem.
Next stop was a trip across town to visit the Confucius Institute Headquarters. once again a warm welcome and a tour of their  museum displaying many aspects of Chinese culture.

 Liam and Ian
 Confucius Institute welcome.
Huiwen Middle School welcome.
 Strike the pose.
 Scorpions for sale.
Tourists on Wangfujing Street
Local businessman at work.

Final stop of the day was a few hours on Wangfujing Street, famous for its shops and snack food, which includes scorpions, sea horses, snakes and many other strange delicacies, some of which we tasted to varying degrees of satisfaction. The lads also got their first experience in dealing with the local currency and they managed to propel the Chinese economy into the fast lane in a brief period of time as they unloaded  yuan after yuan.

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