Christopher Nixon Cox retraced his grandfather's historic 1972 trip to China on Friday, trailed through Tiananmen Square by an entourage of aging Nixon administration luminaries, state-media paparazzi and Chinese security agents.

The trip, timed for the year of President Richard M. Nixon's 100th birthday, was carefully organized to lionize the accomplishments of both the Nixon administration and the Chinese Communist Party. Over the next week or so, the delegation will dine with Chinese officials, hike the Great Wall, coo at pandas and ride a new bullet train to Shanghai.

Cox, 34, a New York investment banker with ­political ambitions, was eager to bask in the celebratory glow of a Nixonian legacy uncomplicated by memories of Watergate and a resignation in disgrace. "My grandfather's trip was about friendship, cooperation and building bridges," he said. "I hope my visit carries on that spirit for a new generation."

Although Cox stood out in the crowd as he toured the city, his wife, Andrea Catsimatidis Cox, 23, attracted even more attention with her low-cut crimson top and blond hair. For the handful of former members of the Nixon administration who were part of Cox's delegation, seeing Beijing clogged with luxury cars and modern skyscrapers reaffirmed the importance of Nixon's historic handshake with Mao.

new york Times