Beijing, China. July 2004 (a01)
23 January 2005
2808e Wednesday, July 28, 2 PM.
To be at 89th Esperanto World Convention, I arrived in Beijing, in China, Friday evening, July 23, 2004. The convention finished Saturday, July 31 early afternoon. I stayed in Beijing until Friday, August 6 in the morning, and then I flew to Shanghai, where I stayed until Wednesday, August 11 at 4 PM.
En Shanghai I lived two days at the house of a Chinese Esperanto-speaker and his wife. His wife didn't speak Esperanto. She said that this language wasn't interesting to her. But now, when she found that her husband and I easily communicate using Esperanto, she said: "Now I can see that Esperanto is a people's language. I am going to learn it." And then she started to repeat everything I was saying in Esperanto.
I will try to tell what happened to me and what happened around me with pictures ...
2602e Friday, July 23, 8 PM.
It was a beautiful feeling when we left customs at this unknown airport and then meet 3 young Esperanto-speakers waiting for us travelers. Robert Stalzer traveled in the plane together with me.
One of the young ladies stayed there waiting for other travelers. The other two took our suitcases and walked us, first to the window of the "Bank of China" about 100 yards away, so we could exchange some US dollars into yuans, and later they took us to the taxi stop, and told the driver to take us to the hotel next to the Convention Center.
The cashier gave as 821 yuan for 100 US dollars. It was the same rate we could get at the hotel or in any other exchange office.
2609e Saturday, July 24, 8 AM.
I am in front of a red sign that tells about the 89th Esperanto World Convention. There were signs on all lampposts, several blocks around the Convention Center.
2616e Saturday, July 24, 2 PM.
Tiananmen Square, the biggest square in the world. The Imperial Palace first gate is on the background. The square was built in 1417. It is 800 meters (2666 feet) long from south to north, and 500 meters (1666 feet) wide.
2620e Saturday, July 24, 2 PM.
Tiananmen Square. People's Hall is on the background.
See Tiananmen Square and other parts of Beijing.
2628e Saturday, July 24, 3 PM.
The Imperial Palace (Forbidden City) served the Ming and Qing dynasties. It is in downtown Beijing, just north of Tiananmen Square. It is 750 meters (2500 feet) wide. It has only two gates, one on the South side and the other on the North side. There are 960 meters (3200 feet) in between the two gates.
To enter the palace, we walked Northward from Tiananmen Square, we went through a big gate (seen in picture 2616) we walked through another big square, a bridge over the moat and the palace gate.
To continue the walk, we had to go through many gates, many squares, and to get near the grand halls also many stairs. Around the grand halls there was some shade and even a breeze, but everything else was under a hot sun. The temperature was around 35 degrees C (95 F) almost every day during my two weeks in Beijing.
Because of the distance, the many stairs, the big crowd, it takes about two hours to reach the Imperial Gardens. The grand halls may only be seen through the doors or windows. Visitors are not allowed to enter the halls.
2640e Saturday, July 24, 3 PM.
It took 14 years to build the Imperial Palace, from 1407 until 1420. A million workers did this job. They drilled many water wells along the way, to freeze the road in winter, and thus being able to push the big stones on the ice for transportation to the Palace.
2645e Saturday, July 24, 4 PM.
The Imperial Gardens are beautiful. They provided shade and rest to the people that walked two hours under the summer sun. They also have the restrooms that we didn't find until then. There are some stone monuments of the kind that can be seen in many Chinese parks.
2649e Saturday, July 24, 4 PM.
The exit, north gate, and the wide
moat by Jingshan Qianjie Street.
Mirinda botelo: (Admirable. Worthy of admiration).
To quench my thirst I bought this refreshment bottle: The whole label is written in Chinese ... but one word is in Esperanto: "Mirinda", the brand-name. It means "Worthy of admiration". Even if now belongs to Pepsi ... the original owner was an Esperanto-speaker.
Pages a01 a02 Shanghai Other pages
The other pages are still in Esperanto ...
to be translated.
But you can see the other pictures on the Esperanto pages.
Fremont, California, USA
23 January 2005 . .