January 8, 2012

Beijing Day 1 (8 Jan 2012)

Can’t believe I’m actually in Beijing! It’s bloody freezing, my first experience with a proper winter, Guilin wasn’t as cold compared to this! Temperature ranges from 5°C to -8°C!

The flight was uneventful, I opted for the beef stew meal and watched ‘Moneyball’ and ‘One Day’, the latter made me cry and got my pillow all wet. Got my first glimpse of snow just as we were landing.

Upon clearing immigration, I spotted a woman dressed for summer in the sea of winter coats, don’t know what she was thinking! I wasn’t prepared for the blast of cold air as me and my boss Phil exited the airport…freaking cold I tell you!

Am staying in a lovely room at the Ritz Carlton Beijing for the next 4 nights. Don’t be too envious - this is not a corporate hotel and purely an exception for logistical reasons because we are holding an event here which involves the CEO and an EVP and they can’t afford to waste too much time shuttling. But still, the bathroom is big-ass and I can’t wait to soak in the tub.

Didn’t venture too far for dinner, just the next door shopping centre called Shin Kong Place. Struggled to find and order a familiar dish at the food court where nobody at the stalls spoke English or had English menus and I didn’t want to accidentally order dog meat or something.

Finally got a preserved vegetable and pork la mian. It was way too salty but I finished it anyway because I was so hungry.

Phil needed to get a warmer jacket and he tried on several coats at the mall, with me acting as his stylist and interpreter in my koyak Mandarin. He finally found one he liked and once back at the hotel, we went to check out the club lounge and spa…swanky.

Time for bed, it's been a long day…goodnight!

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