Sitting Pretty in the Forbidden City

Greetings from the Future!

It is just past 12:30 a.m. on Sunday, March 15. Much has transpired since our last dispatch. We traversed the North Pole, Siberia and through time and space and finally arrived at our first destination, Beijing. After breezing through customs and baggage claim, we successfully navigated the airport express train and the Beijing subway system — a feat that I am quite proud of — and arrived at our hostel, the Beijing Downtown Backpackers Accommodation at around 6:30 p.m, Friday night.

We sipped on Tsingtao beers at the bar next door to the hostel and were soon joined by China resident and good friend from back home, David Petito. It was at this point that our plans of having a low key evening — with the goal of simply staying awake until an appropriate bedtime hour in order to get on local time — were dashed.

What ensued was a rollicking night out in Beijing’s Hutong neighborhood featuring beer, burgers and surprisingly good live music at Club Dada. Despite having gone nearly 48 hours without a good night’s sleep, we managed to stay out until nearly 2 a.m. This triumphant effort was effective in conquering our jet lag. We woke up Saturday morning at the appropriate hour of 9 a.m. Unfortunately, the unpleasantness of jet lag was replaced with a biting hangover. But we didn’t let this keep us down.

Unfazed, we attacked the day and the city with a youthful zest that defied my throbbing head and unsettled stomach. The stomach may be due to the fact that I made the bold decision to fast track my GI system’s assimilation by brushing my teeth with tap water — a decision whose consequences will be revealed with time.

Our first day in The People’s Republic of China’s capital city included sight seeing in Tiananmen Square and the  Forbidden City, and was filled with culinary marvels like baozi (steamed buns), meat on sticks, noodles and hot pot.

Photo by Leivianthon Murphy

Here we are eating baozi and enjoying a Chinese Coca Cola. We tried the meat (pork) and veggie varieties, both of which also had cellophane noodles inside as part of the filling. (Photo by Leivianthon Murphy)

I am now back at the hostel about to go to sleep. We have another big day ahead of us, but first, here are some  photos from our adventure so far:

Photos by guest photographer Leviathon Murphy.


  1. Richard · March 15, 2015

    Of course ‘eat, drink and be merry’ is the perfect cure for jet lag! I’ll stop complaining about the Daylight Savings Time adjustment. Enjoy!


  2. Kari · March 16, 2015

    Beautiful pictures of Beijing!!! Keep them coming!


  3. Laura McWilliams · March 16, 2015

    Maria highly enjoyed reading about your adventures. Keep them coming . Much love and God bless the two of you, mrs. Mc


  4. Rachael · March 16, 2015

    Love the pictures AND the plan for beating jet lag!!


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s