Authors: Menno Spierenburg and David Al Juma
The participants flocked to Schiphol from different regions of the Netherlands in order to join the study trip of Mollier. We gathered at the Burger King at Schiphol and the polo shirts (especially made for the study trip) were distributed among the members. Meanwhile, some measurement data related to indoor air quality were acquired at Schiphol airport, like the CO2, temperature and relative humidity values. Within this blog you can see our first group photo where we were still full of energy.
On our way to Beijing we had a transit in Frankfurt. The spare time between the flights was used to have one last European meal before we had to eat rice for the remainder of the trip (three times a day).
The flight from Frankfurt to Beijing took approximately eight hours which was a quite long trip. After the take-off they served dinner and after seven hours we got breakfast. The time difference between Schiphol and Beijing is six hours. So, when we arrived at 7 a.m. in Beijing, it was actually 1 a.m. back home. Due to the strange times (too early to go to bed) and the lack of comfort, it was quite difficult to get some sleep. However, the pillow helped some of us to get nap for 2 or three ours tops during the flight.
The second day began at 7 a.m. The weather in Beijing was outstanding, except for some clouds which vanished after a while.
A bus picks us up from the airport and takes us to the hostel. We immediately encounter a typical problem in Beijing which is traffic jam. There was unexpectedly a lot of green during the trip to the hostel. At 11 a.m. we arrived at the hostel and the temperature is around 28°C.
The hostel looks like a Chinese paradise in contract to the dull surroundings, comparable with the Vandevalk hotel at exit Beukelen A2.
Within the hostel some things had to be managed. For instance the lunch for 21 persons, this was a quite tough challenge. Furthermore, travel passes for the metro had to be arranged. For the lunch, we arrived at a luxurious Chinese restaurant. At the beginning we had no clue on how eat the food which was provided to us; furthermore, some of us were completely helpless with handling the chopsticks. After the lunch, we had rush to reach Arup on time (actually we were already late).
We had a warm welcome once we arrived at ARUP and they gave a presentation about green architecture and the role of Arup in it. Furthermore, they gave a presentation about the use and efficiency of elevators in buildings as well. Although the presentations were interesting, some people were having a very hard time staying awake due to the lack of sleep in the previous night.
The view from ARUP was astonishing, which was way better to endure than the presentations (for staying awake). This is because the office is situated at the 30th floor next to the CCTV tower which is designed by the Dutch architect Rem Koolhaas.
The Temple of Heaven was however skipped due to traffic jams and overenthusiastic speakers at ARUP. Most people did go to the Red Theater for a show with Kung Fu, although the planning for the remainder of the day was cancelled (due to lack of time, or tired people). This was after dinner, which was done in two groups; one did choose for Asian kitchen, while the others went to the good old Pizza Hut.
The performance in the Red Theater was spectacular spectacular, but most people did doze off, no matter how hard we tried to stay awake for the show. However exhaustion is relative, which can be observed by the fact that some people still went out for half of the night. Stories from this will follow in the next episode of: ‘ Mollier in Beijing’.