Yesterday was Christmas Eve Day. It was very smoggy with poor visibility. We delayed our trip to the Imperial Palace because of the smog and went to the Dirt Market instead. It is called the Panjiauuan Market by the guide books. Huge would not describe it. Everything imaginable is there. The furniture is beautiful. Taxi cabs are the mode to transportation and are very cheap but the rides are always like an amusement park ride. Full of surprises.

Lunch was at a MacDonalds where the food was save but very bland. Christmas decorations there were amusing. After lunch, back to the market until 4 PM. Meg and I left Rob and Karen and went to the Lufthansa Center to shop some more. This is a very different experience from the Dirt Market. Upscale with more Europeans and wealthy Chinese. We walked through a couple of average neighborhoods to get to Meg’s apartment building (the Somerset). Met Rob and Karen, had supper and off to Christmas Eve services.

To get into the church (or where it meets), everyone shows either a passport or some state required identification. The service was international yet Christians already know each other whether in the U.S. or China.

By 10 PM, jet lag had me. My day was over. It is now Christmas Day and 4 AM but I am up awake and alone. We will go to Church this morning and have lunch with several other couples. More later.

Merry Christmas and may the Shalom of Heaven rest upon you today and for the year to come.

Dr. L