Up & around before breakfast – it’s Sat AM.
Finally found D’s picture from Breakfast.
Watch where you swing that thing – you can put an eye out!
After Lunch, our heretofore unnamed driver brought the van around to pick us up. As we walked toward the van, Robert asked me an interesting question…
“What’s a good American Name – for the Driver??” Customarily, most poeple adopt English/American names (e.g. Robert) to more easily communicate. For example, on one of our previous trips we met a young man on Shamian Island who called himself James – apparently he was fond of American Basketball and his idol was LeBron James. Therefore he would be James, as well. Anyway, I drew a blank, and said let me think about it. Once we were underway, Robert then polled the Van with the same question. Before he could even get out the last word of his query, Aunt Rita confidently pronounces: “Harry” !!
Robert pondered that for a moment and with a quizzical look on his face, he reached for a piece of paper and wrote out H-A-R-R-Y to see what it would look like. As he finished writing, AR mentioned to Robert: “That’s my Dog’s Name” – which it is. Robert holds the page out so he and the driver can both see it, and cracks a huge grin. With a big chuckle he translates the exchange for the Driver, whose English seems to only extend to “Hi” and “Traffic”. As he explained to his friend his new name, you could just tell when he got to the part about “Harry” being AR’s DOG’s name!! He lets out a big laugh, grabs “Harry’s” shoulder, shakes it and razzes him like a fifth grader giving a buddy grief about wearing floods!! It stuck!
Friendly Note to anyone else who may ever have “Robert” as a Catherine Lu Guide – aks for Harry he’s a great driver, and a good sport to boot.
We drove, in some pretty knarly traffic, to the Summer Palace across town. On the way, Robert told us the story of his favorite American TV commercial. Any of our followers can offer a guess – I’ll wait a moment til you make your choice – – – – – – . Think “Mike, Mike, Mike…”. Yes, the Geico commercials with the Camels!!! He acted out the whole thing (actually, both commercials) in the car – hardly containing his laughter as he spoke. It was very funny. At the end, he asks “What is GEEKO?” We educated HIM for one of the only times yesterday when we told him it was a car insurance company.
We had a wonderful visit, and the grounds were beautiful. Robert filled us in on the “Dragon Lady” and how she ruled China from “behind the mirror” acting as the voice for three very young chosen rulers, aged 5, 4 and 3 respectively. We saw the Marble Boat, as well.
Here some photos:
picture in front of a very cool lake at the Summer Palace – lots of people out riding in the boats (paddle?) behind us.
picture of the Olympic Bird’s Nest Building (this area will be re-used again in the Beijing Winter Olympics in 2020.
This was the start of the Beijing Night Market — starfish …
Not sure what this is…looks like lobster of some sort, but seriously who knows with this market (nothing looked refrigerated either!)