View Full Version : First impressions of Beijing

07-08-08, 20:02
Posted: 1516 GMT
At first I thought it was the smell of the jet engines. Then I thought it was the bus engines. But as we pulled away from the Beijing airport in the media shuttle, the stench was joined by a haze. It was 830 p.m. when I arrived with some of the guys from CNN sports. So we have yet to get the full visual effect of the smog.

The smell of the pollution lingers with us now as we sit in the cafeteria, having a few drinks, swapping stories about the flights over and Olympics past …

I am the rookie on the trip. Cameraman John McAfee has been to nine Olympic games. My suite mates, anchors Larry Smith and Mark McKay, are veterans of four Olympiads and are very impressed by our rooms in the media village. While I get the smallest room, it’s huge by past comparisons.

And the staff here are exceptionally nice. I have four bags and I really didn’t touch them after I was whizzed through customs. Everything has been first class.

Posted by: CNN.com producer, Steve Almasy