Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Visiting venues and the Silk Market

We've spent Monday and Tuesday checking out broadcast positions for the various venues in Beijing. Monday was spent at the Water Cube, which is just as cool as everyone says that it is....in fact, most of these new buildings are very well done. The Bird's Nest, which is the site of the Opening Ceremonies, is strange to look at, but a compelling building.

The Water Cube is startling when seen up close at night. It glows. I've not been inside at night yet, but they say that it gives you the feeling of being underwater when you're in the building at night.

My other exciting experience came earlier today, when we went downtown to the Beijing Silk Market. Picture a 6 story building, filled with allegedly name brand merchandise, and small Chinese women trying to push this merchandise on you at an aggressive rate. That's the Silk Market.

You walk down narrow hallways, surrounded by merchandise. Girls reach out and grab at your arms every few feet, trying to pull you into their little area. Then, the fun really begins. Say you are looking at a sweater, as I was earlier today. You get pulled into the booth, and she pulls out a calculator. "Now, this...this is price I give others...but I like you, so here is price for you." Then, she quotes some ridiculous price for this sweater, like 1520 yuan, roughly 220 USD. You laugh, and the game begins. You finally work your way down to garage sale prices. Long sleeve "Polo" shirt? 6 bucks. Sweater? 10 bucks. That's how the game is played. It is extremely addictive, kind of like going to an auction.
You can find almost anything in the world at this Silk Market, and usually very cheap. Great experience in Beijing.
Tomorrow, more preparation for the start of the Olympics....the US swimming press conference. Yeah! I hear Michael Phelps may get a question or two directed his way.


huskercub said...

You should be in heaven with those prices. Did you tell your wife not to buy any new school clothes for the your daughters??

You should check out one of those suit making shops. Maybe you could get one like Trapper John on MASH with the vertical pinstripes.

Paul in Odell

Kevin Kugler said...

One of the guys on our crew bought a suit today at one of those suit making shops. 179 bucks American for a tailor made suit. Not sure how good it is, but he swears it is great quality!

Kristin said...

Hey Kevin! Hope you're having a great time! What does Mountain Dew run over there? I see a Coke Zero is .27??? Could you bring a few cases of dew back for me? :)


Sean Callahan said...

Very cool. Sounds like you are having a great time out there. You sure didn't miss much in day one of fall practice. Good luck with everything!

Sean Callahan