Nicholas Quirke was on his own again on 30 March 2020 as Peng set off to start another week at work. The previous week has been dominated by visits to the massage hospital and now that it felt as if his condition was improving he was cutting down on the treatment, which gave him more time to explore. He was keen to see the old observatory and even though he suspected it would be closed he planned his route. It looked very straightforward, taking him past one of his favourite sights, not just in Beijing, but possibly in the world, which made it it another reason to undertake the journey. First, he needed to do a little housework some laundry and catch up with correspondence. It was another warm day, though he noted that the smog had settled, not that he would leave the house without a mask anyway. It was a good cycle ride that took him beyond the confines of his usual routes. He found the site without any problems and discovered he was also right next to the broken rainbow arch which spanned Jianguomen Inner Avenue . It was disappointing, though not unexpected, that it was closed, though he could observe the instruments of the Beijing Ancient Observatory, one of the oldest stellar observation sites in the world, from a distance. It was built in 1442 and astoundingly operate entirely without telescope. There are eight original instruments for star-gazing that have survived since the Ming Dynasty installed and built the Observastory. It looked intriguing and he would defiantly return. The good thing for him was he had located it and understanding the layout of the city was an important part for him of adapting to life in Beijing. In addition he had some exercise. He needed some refreshment and a nearby mall provided a Teasure where he enjoyed a relaxing Pu-er Ripe tea and had a conversation with his brother and learning a little of London And Southwark lockdown life, before heading back to his base on the subway. Despite feeling weary as he had not eaten, he prepared food for the next day including a breakfast smoothie. He had a long Face to Face with his sister and niece and learned about coping with lockdown in Godalming. Perhaps as a result of the foods he had been eating he felt like he had an allergic reaction to something in his mouth, his tongue and the inside of his cheeks were sore and he had slightly swollen lip, though there was no visible signs of sores at all. He mouth-washed with salt water and little fed up with the growing list of minor ailments he was experiencing took to his bed.


  1. I wonder what caused that reaction?? Hope you don’t wake up looking like the elephant man 😱xxx

Leave a Reply