Changing China

Giant on the move

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Beijing bustling again already


As Olympic visitors started to worry on Sunday about airport return traffic, cars in Beijing were being parked on sidewalks again.

Night clubs were open after an anti-prostitution blitz a few weeks ago. Once banished vendors scrummed on sidewalks to sell Olympic pins, the collection of which had grown to a competitive roar among locals close to the Games.

In shopping districts, you’d win gold for walking 100 metres in under an hour, a silver to stay standing amid shoves and a bronze to hear yourself talk on the phone.

China’s athletic dominance at a terrorism-free Olympics motivated celebratory locals to re-emerge into the streets over the final days of the Games, clogging venues with bodies and cars, basically returning to life as usual.