Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Beijing -- Peking University and Summer Palace

Shanliang must have accompanied Rich to the airport very early. We had breakfast in the hotel – donut like sweet rolls, cucumber and sprout salad, sticky buns and warm real milk.

Then it was off to Peking University for my talk. Only two professors and one student came. A lot of money and work for that! I did meet a female prof who had to teach. One student, Mr. Wang, came as did the representative from i-Group who brought brochures about ACM. Despite the small gathering, I think the talk was a success.

Ming took us to observe a class on CS theory and then on a walking tour which included seeing the site of the 2008 Olympic table tennis games. We had lunch at the Peking University Hotel. It was very good. We had crunchy pork spareribs, duck, a whole fish and the assorted veggies. Afterwards we walked about the entire campus which was very park-like. I gathered it was the location of the old summer palace of the emperor.

Back to our hotel to change and then Shanliang and the driver took us to the Summer Palace. We walked up and up to get to the temple at the top. It is called Longevity Hill. The dirt that was dug to put in a lake made the hill.

We then scrambled to find a geocache hidden among rocks in the woods below. Phil spotted it and then let Shanliang find it, too.

We walked about the grounds and saw an old guy on an outcropping play an instrument while a girl sang with the accompanying loudspeaker. We walked up to a temple of a god with lots of arms and then took the covered long walk (Phil says there were 14,000 paintings on it) to another park gate where we were met by the driver.

Phil and I explored the area by walking toward a geocache and stopping a little supermarket where we bought a bottle of Great Wall wine. We had a drink of it with leftover airline snacks before dinner. We just had rice and soup for dinner because we were full from lunch.

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