Bullet Train to Beijing
By: Janise Park ’20 and Jenson Green ’22
We spent a large part of the day travelling from Xi’an all the way to Beijing. Although the trip was nearly 700 miles the high-speed bullet train got us there in a few hours. Upon arrival in Beijing, we hit the ground running and immediately made our way to our first stop, the Temple of Heaven. Upon arriving at the temple, we noticed two walls protecting the temple. The outer wall was rectangular and the inner wall was circular, representing the Chinese philosophy of 风水,(feng shui), balance. The rectangle represents the Earth and the circle is the Heavens. While walking to the base of the temple, our guide explained how the emperor would walk on the right side of the path, with powerful officials to his left. On our way to the exit, we noticed a park nearby and were given some free time to explore. We noticed many people playing hacky-sack and some senior citizens stretching or working out. We were eventually invited to play hacky-sack with the elders and one woman came up to us to show us the proper technique. Due to the great amount of oxygen released by the trees, the park was a prime spot to work out in especially with the rising heat and humidity. And to end the day, we had traditional Peking roast duck for dinner. We are very excited to see what else Beijing has in store us in the next few days.