Sunny with a brisk temperature of -15

Our welcoming message from the pilot at 10am this morning arriving in Beijing. Its cold, very cold. The BBC weather forecast did not tell the truth it seems. 9 million people live in the city limits and flying in you can see where. Huge estates of very high-rise flats interspersed by factories and industry. With the haze, smog and chimneys belting out something it felt like a scene from some sci-fi apocalypse movie.

The airport was vast and empty, Chinese new year is definitely a good time to fly. Henry our part-time tour guide picks us up, warns us of the traffic and gives some handy hints. 30 minutes later we arrive at our courtyard hotel pretty central.

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