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Trip Report Trip report China

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Thanks to everyone who gave me input as to my sometimes silly questions before leaving for our 3 1/2 week trip to China.
Beijing:
We went to China 3 days before out tour supposedly began trying to adjust to the time difference. Good idea s well as bad. Our tour really did not start the first day as they called it "travel day" so we had 4 days before the tour. It was hard to do things that would not be a repeat of the itinerary. We did however, thanks to someone on this broad, go to Black Sesame Kitchen for a fabulous meal! It was in a Hutong restaurant and at first we thought we'd never come out alive as it is circuitous getting there but it was worth the trip! The place is unique. Ten courses and wines. $49 US each. People ate communally and were all over the world. All found it online. It is even listed in the book of 1000 Things to do Before you Die! Must go. Make reservations online a few months in advance!
We also went to Ding Ding hotpot restaurant but unless you know Chinese it is a problem unless you go for lunch. Fun but hard when we went with 8 people for dinner. NOt one person who worked there spoke English! It is in a mall called: Shin Kong Palace which is amazing. The top floor is all restaurants but the other floors are a sight to see! Very expensive and gorgeous.
We had dinner in a family's tiny home in the Hutong area. Amazing what a woman can do with a tiny old kitchen. I was hesitant at first to eat as it was not the cleanest place but we all did. someone suggested I bring my own chopsticks and it was a great idea. The fold up kind. They use plastic ones in China and they just wash them and reuse them!
Took typical pedicab ride. Very commercial.
More tomorrow...

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