We started the day at Peking University, which is one of Beijing’s 65 universities. Peking University was established in 1898. Our group was there to hear a lecture on Chinese history. Professor Kristofer Schipper from the Royal Netherlands Academy of Arts and Sciences was the guest lecturer. Professor Schipper outlined in detail an account of Chinese History and allowed our group to ask questions ranging from historical perspectives to current policies of the Chinese Government. Today was graduation at Peking University. I have attached a photo of the graduates. Their students look just like ours and the smiles on their faces are not unlike those of United States students.
We left the university for lunch (comments to come later…). After lunch we went to Tienanmen Square and the Forbidden City. The rich history of the Chinese people is clearly visible when you are able to experience these cultural and historical treasures. If the photos from these get published on the blog you will notice a haze in each picture. The pollution in Beijing is noticeable, as well as disturbing. In an attempt to reduce the pollution, the government has restricted vehicle use to every other day for those who own cars. I am not sure if we will ever see the sun while in Beijing. It will be interesting to see how the air quality impacts the Olympic athletes.
Now for the food… Well today I will retract one of my previous comments I made on Day One. I stated that I like everything chicken.
Well as you can see in the photo, there is one chicken and its head that I could not eat. I will say that every meal begins with five to six appetizers and then anywhere from seven to 10 courses. According to our interpreters, eating out in a restaurant is considered a special treat. I will take some photos of an entire meal to give the readers some perspective. Since I came well prepared not to eat, I brought with me a bag of candy. I passed out Reese’s peanut butter cups to our Chinese hosts. They all range from 25-30 years old. It was their first Reese’s they had ever had. That was my contribution to cultural exchange.
Jerrod has a TV endorsement for Subway. After this week in China, I should be on every Pop Tart box in the United States.
Having a great time in China….
Bob Morrison is the deputy superintendent of Mansfield schools. For more of Morrison's photos from China, click here.