I found some lovely papercuttings at the shops. This is an art passed down through generations in certain families in China. This complicated and symmetrical piece took the artist (also the salesgirl) 4 hours to complete using a small pair of sharp scissors.
I wanted to get myself some Islamic Chinese calligraphy pieces like this one but was told that roads leading to area selling them had been closed due to snow. Too bad, maybe next time. It's so difficult to find these in Malaysia.
We went to watch an Acrobatic show. Interesting. Am really impressed with the bian-lian (face-changing) performances. Still can't figure out how the artistes could change their painted faces from one mask to another at the fraction of a second - right before your eyes!
We went shopping at the Markets in Beijing. What fun we had bargaining China's style, hehehe (learn to smile and laugh even as you bargain). Some of us were chased by eager salesgirls and a few were pulled back when we walked away after some tough bargaining ("Ok, ok.. you get it for your price"hahaha). I like the way they display thair merchandise in the small shops - so neat and eye-catching. And we could find all sorts of things in the Markets - clothes, traditional items, souvenirs, watches, electronics, etc all sold at affordable prices in one single building. Hmmm, wish we have this concept back in Malaysia.
This is the last of my entry about my trip to Beijing. The Chinese have managed to preserve their arts and culture for generations and I'm grateful to be given to chance to see some of them. Of course, I should also mention about the food massage I had at the Chinese Traditional Medicine Centre (ermm, great), the Fresh Water Pearl Centre (learn how to recognise a real pearl from a fake), the Burning Cream Centre (watched a man's hand being burned and healed within minutes, and ended up buying some cream, huhuhu), the Silk Store (touched a silk cocoon and upon shaking it, realised that the dead silk worms were still inside, euww) and the Jade and Chrystal shop (watched a man cut designs on a jade piece using a machine - awesome!), which we went to as part of our tour.
Alhamdulillah despite all trials and tests we had managed to reach there and return home safely. If you're planning to go soon, do note that it's snowing now and you can try skiing. It's lovely in spring but dusty by the end of the season.
Oh yes, I went with the TM Tours and Travels Sdn Bhd, which is based in Kuala Lumpur. Am very satisfied with their services, and we flew with MAS.
My next trip oversea? Hmmm tell you later..pray that I'll have more halal rezeki from Allah. Got plenty of work to do this coming school year.. aduhhh!!!