After a wonderful time catching up with as many friends and family as we could in a short amount of time, eating as much freshly caught fish and tasty, tender beef possible and sucking in as much fresh air as we could we are now back in China. On our flight back the air hostess put a sticker on Leo's shirt and said that he had been selected by customs to have his luggage checked so when we arrived in Guangzhou the ground staff would escort us to the Customs Office. This was a little worrying as I had thrown vegemite and tea bags in his bag at the last minute and wasn't sure if it should have been declared. Anyway we were taken to a room where we sat for 40 minutes wondering if we were still going to catch our connecting flight to Beijing, then to be told all is ok we were right to leave.
We checked in to a Hotel in Beijing for a couple of nights and as you can see from our view out the window, China is constantly under construction.
We have decided to trial living in Beijing for a while and Leo traveling the 400kms each week to the farm on the fast train. After trying the Chinese way of life we have decided it is time to give the ex-pat way of life a go. We have found a modern 2 bedroom/1 bathroom fully furnished apartment in the suburb of Dongzhimen. I know I am going to miss Leo popping in throughout the day talking farming to me but there is so much more to do in Beijing than Qihe so I am willing to give it a go.
I am looking forward to having my own kitchen again and cooking up a storm with the help of the western supermarket, April Gourmet that is located under our apartment. You wouldn't believe what a nice feeling it was to see some familiar brands. My plan is to cook up some meals and send them back to the farm with Leo to zap for his dinner during the week as we are a little over eating pig's intestines, chicken's feet, cat ears, pig's blood, donkey's testicles just to name a few of the so called delicacies they have served us. Lunch today back at the farm was chicken's stomach and they wondered why we didn't like it. A lovely little chinese girl sitting across from me said, "Every part of the animal is for eating in China". I said, "Yes, I know" and thought but I am still waiting for them to serve up the meat of the animal instead of all the other parts.
Saturday night we went to Paddy O'Shea's bar which is owned by a French man and has an Indian Restaurant inside. We played darts, drank beer & wine, ate pizza and chatted with a Swedish man, an american, a South African and an English man. I am thinking we might enjoy this ex-pat way of life.