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-   -   In China now on an ABD and ... (http://www.disboards.com/showthread.php?t=2903121)

pxlbarrel 03-31-2012 11:04 AM

In China now on an ABD and ...
 
Let's just say we take our Internet for granted at home. LOL. Facebook and Twitter are both banned here so I can't keep up with stuff at home or updat epeople on our trip until we get to Hong Kong. Oh well... Less typing on an iPad is ok to me.

What's curiouser, and maybe it's just a coincidence, but I can get into every DIS forum EXCEPT the Adventures by Disney one. I was going to post a update of today's events but the forum never loads.

I've been up for over 3o hours now so I think it's time to call it a night. We meet the other families and our guides (Daisy and Jennae) tomorrow. :cool1:

WorldWacky 03-31-2012 08:48 PM

Hope you have a great vacation! :thumbsup2 What an experience it must be!

wdwscout 03-31-2012 08:52 PM

Can't wait until you can post more. This trip sounds fantastic!

pxlbarrel 03-31-2012 08:53 PM

Just trying to stay awake now. LOL and having some Facebook withdrawal.

It's morning and I'm just lying here watching the National Geographic channel. :happytv:

Btw, I used the Coolmax travel blanket that Kevin recommended. I loved it.

sayhello 03-31-2012 10:00 PM

I hope you're having a FABULOUS time!!!

Hey, if you continue to have problems posting in the ABD Forum, just PM it to me (or post it here) and I'll be happy to re-post it for you over there!

Sayhello

Tamar 03-31-2012 10:56 PM

Have a great time. Can't wait to see the trip report! China's the trip that keeps calling to me.

DisneyKevin 03-31-2012 11:02 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by sayhello (Post 44478515)
I hope you're having a FABULOUS time!!!

Hey, if you continue to have problems posting in the ABD Forum, just PM it to me (or post it here) and I'll be happy to re-post it for you over there!

Sayhello

Or....you could post it here and post a directional post with a link on the ABD board.

Mary Jo 04-01-2012 04:37 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by DisneyKevin (Post 44479073)
Or....you could post it here and post a directional post with a link on the ABD board.

Excellent suggestion. :)

Looking forward to reading about your adventures, pxlbarrel. :goodvibes

pxlbarrel 04-01-2012 04:49 AM

Sounds good to me.

The Adventurers: me, the Bro, the Mom and the Dad

Pre-trip Day
I was sitting at work trying to get some work done but not succeeding very much. LOL. At about 3:00 pm, I checked us in on our Air Canada flight (the only direct flight to Beijing from Toronto). Its a 13.5 hour flight which I was dreading. BUT when I checked us in at the 24 hour mark, I was able to purchase last minute upgrades. We were going to fly in Executive First which on AC means we get the lie down flat seats. My brother and I surprised my parents with the upgrade and they were very happy (and boy, so was I!). The trip back may still be in economy so we'll see.

Day 1 of the trip
As we boarded the plane, I had my camcorder out trecording everything. The co-pilot saw me doing this and gestured to me to follow him. He led me into the cockpit to say hello to our pilot!! What a treat! This was amazing and this was one of the best flight crews (attendants included) that we've ever flown with.

Most of e flight involved eating, watching the Muppets and Bridesmaids and playing Angry Birds. LOL While the flight was vey comfortable, sleep was fleeting.

We arrived in Beijing around 3:30 pm. As we walked toward passport control we passed temperature sensors. They check everybody's temperature before they're allowed to enter the country ... A souvenir of the SARS outbreak many years ago. After they stamped our passports we boarded a train to get to Terminal 3C where baggage claim is located. Everybody crammed into the train. It was packed! The train took quite a while to get to the terminal ... this airport is huge. And it's probably why it took our luggage so long to arrive too. We grabbed a couple of carts to load our luggage. Word of warning ... A bunch of people grab the carts right after they exit the train. As I watched this, I thought, this is going to be like a gazillion strollers at MK but ten times worse. Beware of crazed people with luggage carts if you value your ankles.

As we left baggage claim and left the controlled area, we found our ABD rep standing amongst the throngs of waiting people. He was holding a sign with our name on it. He had a helper with him and they pushed our carts to the garage where we waited for our car to pick us up. They still had to wait for another family so as soon as they loaded us into the car, they disappeared back into the terminal. As we left the airport, we ran right into Beijing traffic. We were caught in the perpetual rush hour. We arrived at the Peninsula Beijing at 6:30 pm. The Bellhops took our bags right away and directed us to the check-in. As we were checking in, two ABD bags with water bottles were hung on our bags and in them was a note from our ABD guides, Daisy and Jennae. It was advice, instructions and where to meet them the next day.

Two things of note .... We were instructed to brush our teeth with the complimentary bottled water (don't drink the tap water!) and also that pedestrians do not have the right of way. Beware of traffic! We observed the pedestrian mayhem on our harrowing trip to the hotel.

We stayed in the hotel for dinner and turned in for the night.

Gotta go now.... Meeting in the lobby in 10 min for the start of the Adventure!

15isto2 04-01-2012 06:14 AM

Signing up, sounds like it should be a really interesting report

disneyholic family 04-01-2012 07:01 AM

you just reminded me why i hate china ;)

if you want the exact opposite experience, try japan.. :lovestruc

pxlbarrel 04-01-2012 08:49 AM

Day 1 of the Adventure

We had the buffet breakfast at the hotel. It was a mix of western and Chinese food. Real, fresh squeezed orange juice!

At 10 we went to see our Adventure Guides at the hospitality table. Daisy and Jennae were just setting up when we got there. They welcomed us warmly and once one of us said their name, they knew who the rest of us were. The tour didn't actually start until late afternoon so most of today was a free day. We asked Daisy how to get to the Summer Palace. She recommended a hotel or the subway. She wrote down where we wanted to go for the taxi driver including a message to the driver that asked if he would come back to pick us up in 2 hours and she also showed us how to get there if we took the subway. A family from Costa Rica showed up about then.

We took a taxi to the Summer Palace ... And again ended up in really jammed up traffic. It cost us $70 RMB to get there. We opted not to give them Daisy's message about coming back because we thought we'd try the subway for the return trip. The Summer Palace has the most amazing giant rocks that look like fungus. LOL it is also the place with the infamous marble boat. We walked around the lake, looked at some architecture, watched lots of school children on their outing and saw the marble boat. I wish we had more time there. There were pedal boats and little cruises that looked like fun but we didn't have the time.

We decided not to take subway back afterall. LOL We were lucky and managed to grab a taxi that was dropping some people off. The traffic wasn't as bad going back and was only 50 RMB. My dad and I then walked a couple of blocks to a big mall and had a snack. ROFL a cheeseburger from McDonalds and a coffee at Starbucks.

At 5 pm, we met the group in the lobby before we went to the restaurant across the street. I met a fellow DISer (Margie100) and her family there. We then crossed the street en masse with some Peninsula staff and Daisy throwing themselves in front of traffic so we didn't get wiped out.

We all introduced ourselves and our guides explained the trip, some housekeeping and their backgrounds. We had 2 shadow guides in our group. They'll be starting their guide careers soon but this was their first trip shadowing Daisy and Jennae.

The Tea ceremony was next and we were told the courses to our banquet. LOTS of food. You won't go hungry. When we were finishing up our meal it was time to dress up as the Emperor and Empress for photos. My dad really threw himself into the role of Emperor. :rolleyes: Much fun was had embarrassing ourselves. :rotfl2

Tomorrow is an early start at 8:00 am.

DisneyKevin 04-01-2012 09:18 AM

This is awesome!

Thanks for doing this!!!!

pxlbarrel 04-01-2012 09:25 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by DisneyKevin (Post 44480728)
This is awesome!

Thanks for doing this!!!!

I'd include photos but I'm still trying to figure out to FTP photos to my web server from the iPad ... And I keep, dozing off while staring at the iPad!

pxlbarrel 04-01-2012 09:44 AM

I think I figured it out.

At the Summer Palace
http://www.chrismak.com/misc/disboards/china1.jpg


The stone boat
http://www.chrismak.com/misc/disboards/china2.jpg

Daisy and Jennae
http://www.chrismak.com/misc/disboards/china3.jpg

The tea ceremony
http://www.chrismak.com/misc/disboards/china4.jpg

Some food art,
http://www.chrismak.com/misc/disboards/china5.jpg


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