lardbucket: 2017 : february


All the Carbohydrates

Filed under: Travel — aschmitz @ 1:30 pm

Today was mostly unremarkable. A bit colder, and a bit quicker to get to the office. A fun couple of bugs in some custom crypto wrapper for good measure. Breakfast was mostly bready, with an egg and some “garlic pork bowel” that was pretty okay.

Lunch was basically breads as well. A can of orange soda produced by PepsiCo alongside, as it was one of the few obvious ways to get canned/bottled liquid with lunch. We believe the filled bread here contained red bean paste, which wasn’t great tasting, and I abandoned most of the insides. Also, apparently the cafeteria felt the need to remind people what eating was.

For dinner, we went to a Hunan place, where I was warned shortly before ordering that most food was quite spicy. I avoided anything labeled with chilis, and went for fried rice and scallion pancakes. The fried rice ended up being rather spicy, though, so I mosty donated it to Graham after eating as much as I could. I did grab some pork out of a hot pot as well, along with some bread and sweetened condensed milk (not pictured).


On saunas

Filed under: Travel — aschmitz @ 3:03 pm

Apparently, people in Beijing really like to be warm. It was roughly 60 Fahrenheit outside today, and more than one person asked if I was cold with a T-shirt and a long sleeved dress shirt. That seemed normal enough, but then I sat through ~8 hours of meetings in a room that was 82 degrees. The office outside was cooler, but not below 75. For added fun, the air conditioning in my hotel room appears to not work. It took some maneuvering to get it to claim to be cooling, but no such cooling is in evidence. I can’t tell what the current temperature is, but I’d be surprised if it were below 80. I’m on the first floor, so while I could open my window, doing so exposes me to a fair amount of smoke beyond the base level of smog for Beijing. Last night worked out, but was warmer than I’d like. Hopefully this evening cools off somehow as well. 

I ate somewhat sparingly from the cafeteria at the office, but the things I had were mostly okay. (Not pictured: one cabbage(?) dumpling Graham offered, which was not something I feel the need to have again.)

Interestingly to me, no drinks were in evidence with lunch, with the possible exception of many (but not most) people who got soups. Napkins were also out of the way, tiny, and apparently intended for wiping one’s hands after the meal, not during.

For dinner, Alvaro picked a local restaurant specializing in congee (porridge), although nobody really wanted to order it. We shared the dishes we got, and I tried parts of the pork belly, (cold) boiled/salted duck, scallion pancakes, and roast duck, as well as a beer (not super flavorful, but not great). I avoided the spicy cod. 

Rounded out the evening with a Nature Valley “protein” bar (and y’all thought I was kidding), just in case.

Also interesting, there were a lot of stenciled texts with numbers. According to Xiao, the ones on these posts are advertisements for plumbers. I thought it was an odd juxtaposition with the mops laying beside.

Arrival, sleep, breakfast

Filed under: Travel — aschmitz @ 12:23 am

The Beijing airport is rather impressively large, with an international terminal that’s basically cavernous.

Luckily, most things in the airport are labeled in both Chinese and English, including the weight that the hooks will hold. 

Didn’t really do much in the hotel after I arrived, beyond unpacking and getting ready for sleep. Interestingly, there’s a slot with a small switch to encourage you to turn the lights off when you leave the room: you’re supposed to put your room card in it, and all the lights turn off about 15 seconds after you remove the card (at least at night? I couldn’t replicate that behavior in the morning.)

Breakfast was a smallish buffet of international and local things. This is what I ended up with at the first go round. I can’t recall having had a fried egg in a long time if ever, but this was fine.


Plane Food

Filed under: Travel — aschmitz @ 11:53 am

Not quite “plain food”, but close enough. We ended up with a surprising two and a half meals, plus a snack. Landed about an hour early, and got through customs surprisingly quickly: only got asked two questions (is this your first time in China? What’s the purpose of your visit?) total, and just run your bags through an x-ray machine once you pick them up. Now to figure out how to get to the hotel.

Foods on the flight, apparently in reverse order. The ham and cheese pocket came from the airport (and for me, replaced a baguette with ham, cheese, and mustard, along with some snack mix from AA, that I passed to Graham).

My Stuff
Blog Stuff