Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Beijing tidbits

We were so glad we already went to the Great Wall and other big Beijing tourist spots last time we were there so we didn't have to fight the crowds. We were also really glad that they installed a bunch of normal toilets for the Olympics so we didn't have to deal with these ones again. It was funny though, on our overnight train there were foot prints (nice big dirty ones) on the toilet seat. I guess some people just really like the squatter style.

Beijing, like Shanghai, has some pretty cool architecture. Obviously the Bird's Nest and the Water Cube are pretty good examples. This is Dave's favorite building:There's really modern stuff, then really traditional, or French...all kinds of varieties.
It was so interesting to see all the measures they took to make the area around the Olympics nice. I liked these flower beds lining the streets.This picture is to show the license plates. To help the air quality during the Olympics they only let cars with license plates that ended in odd numbers drive one day, then even numbers the next. This was an even day. They also closed down a bunch of factories and bussed all the poor factory workers out of the city.
This is the silk market. Any knock-off you want you can find it here. It was definitely quite a tourist destination because there were people and Olympians crawling all over the place. We met the American rowers who won the bronze medal there and Dave talked to some Australian swimmers. We had dinner next to a French basketball broadcaster and met the German sailing team. I even got to speak some Romanian (that's where I went on my mission) with some guys who were with the Romanian gymnasts.
Those red backpacks are what they give out to the Olympians...we sure saw a lot of them there!It was so interesting to think about the one-child rule. So many people had their one child with them at the Olympics. These kids are just so darn doted on. I took the above picture because it's just so typical to see kids with both their parents and their grandparents. Right before I took this picture all four of them were just coddling this sweet baby...making sure the sun wasn't on her, getting her all situated.
Gotta love the McDonalds bike...

2 comments:

  1. Yea! I'm glad you got to speak some Romanian, Shawni :) It was fun to route for both the Americans and the Romanians during the Olympics. Great photos of Bejing!

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  2. What an incredible adventure and there is no better documentation than all your beautiful photographs and stories. The whole time I was left thinking- this is better than anything I have seen online, in print or on TV. You gave us the inside scoop and more.

    I loved seeing the different events, the beautiful buildings, the doll type characters, the athletes, the closing ceremonies. It was just just so breathtaking. I spend more than my fair share watching the games on TV, so to see your photos and detail on the events was thrilling. While I know you were writing this down for your journal and to share with family, thank you for letting the rest of us come along for the ride. It's one I won't forget soon.

    One more thing. So my husband turned on the TV on Sunday after church and there on BYU-TV were your parents giving a talk at education week back in 2000. It was so fun to see and hear them. Your dad told a story about Max giving an apple to a man at a shelter at Christmas and then he sang him Happy Birthday.

    At the end, your parents told a story about a woman in a grocery store and how she sweetly talked to her screaming 2 year old the entire time the were shopping and at the end she told the man she was really encouraging herself to stay calm and get in and out.

    Not three days later I had my kids in Wal-mart waiting for our pictures to print out and my girls had the biggest melt down in the store. They both were so stubborn and wanted to walk and not ride in the cart. They actually wanted to run away and touch things and pick out food and clothes, but that wasn't going to work. As I picked up Kaitlyn and secured her in the seat and then held Brynn as she screamed and kicked all the while trying to keep the 3 boys close and navigate the cart I was dying to leave. I tried to keep a smile on my face and tell the girls we were almost done. As we walked towards the crackers (Josh need a snack for school the next day) the girls continued to shriek. The boys even commented that people were giving us funny looks. All I could do was laugh and say yup, lucky us. I thought of your parents talk and how we just have to keep moving forward with a smile on our lips, a prayer in our heart and love for our precious kids. It can get us through anything.

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