There’s a funny thing about Beijing. It is so crowded that you need permission to live there. I’m not sure about hotels, but since we were staying AirBNB we were advised by our host that we needed to register at the local police station. It was certainly interesting, and the police officers were not very helpful at all. I have no idea what would have happened if we did not register, but I’d hate to find out.
After that we went to the Wangfujing food market where you can try all types of bugs like scorpions and grubs and other strange street food. We asked one of the vendors if they eat the scorpions and he said no.
We then made our way to this really crazy place called the Pearl Market. It is 3 stories of knock off merchandise. There’s a whole section with fake Rolex watches and almost one whole floor dedicated to ladies handbags. The crazy part is the aggressive salespeople, and the way they jack the prices up expecting to haggle. The rule of thumb here is 10%, so if they say $100 then they will sell it for $10. You need to spend some time to get the price down,and they will grab you by the arm and not let go, so be prepared for that as well. I used google translate to look up how to say “don’t touch” but it didn’t help.
Since I had broken my Tamron 17-50 when I dropped in in Japan, we went looking for a camera shop. We found this big electronics store called BuyNow which is full of booths, each one with a different company, and one of them agreed to fix my lens for about $80.