Thursday, February 16, 2012

Mutianyu Great Wall

Feb. 10, 2012
3 days until JACK DAY!

Internet at our hotel in Beijing, the Jianguo (?) doesn't work very well, so this may have to wait until we get to Nanjing to post.

I just found out that I left the card reader for my camera at home. It's probably right there on the couch, where I was stuffing things into my carryon! If we can't find a card reader or cord, there probably won't be any pictures until we get home.

Today we went to the Mutianyu section of the Great Wall. It is a bit further than the section we went to on our last trip, and the ride there was a bit scary at times! Lots of narrow roads, hairpin turns, oncoming traffic, etc. Our driver was very nice, and a great driver, I just think that all car trips in China are scary!

On the way to the Great Wall we stopped at the Jade factory and took a little tour, then of course we had to buy a couple things. Em picked out her birthday gift, a beautiful jade and silver pendant, and we got a little jade donut pendant for Jack. We also got a generation ball or "happy family ball".

We were going to take the cable car ride to the top of the Great Wall, but it was down for maintenance. We took a ski lift to the top instead. It was kind of scary for me - I don't like heights! Rich and Evie went first, then Bubba and I, then Mom and Em, then Dad and our guide, Minan. I held Bubba in a death grip the whole way up. There might have been praying involved. (ok, there definitely was!) We walked around a bit at the top, climbed some stairs, took lots of pictures, and then rode the ski lift back down. The vendors at the top kept trying to sell us stuff, and they kept telling Rich they had beer to sell! Rich rode the tobaggon ride back down, but was impatient because the lady in front of him was heavy-handed on the brakes and he couldn't go as fast as he wanted. Bubba decided that the ski lift was not a very good idea, and was pretty upset when we had to get on it to go back down, but was happy when I told him that we would never have to do it again! I sang songs to him on the way down to distract him (sorry everyone who was in hearing range!) and even managed to take a few pictures!

After the Great wall we stopped for lunch at a traditional restaurant. We sat at a table with a big lazy susan (I want one for at home!) We had spring rolls with sweet red bean paste, dumplings with vinegar to dip, rice and chicken, cashew chicken, salt and pepper pork, some other kind of pork, and hot tea and sprite! Then we toured the Cloisonne factory, and bought a couple little things.

Buffet for breakfast, McD's for supper.

Tomorrow is the forbidden city and tiananmen square.

There is lots of traffic and honking as usual in China. It is so loud here all the time.

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