We had a great day today sightseeing in Beijing. Here is a picture of our group from our adoption agency (AHH) on the Great Wall. It is hard to believe that we were able to not only see, but climb one of the wonders of the world. It was definitely a steep climb. Willie, Neil, Cole and I went up to the first guard station and it was a challenge.
These pictures don't even capture how steep these steps actually are. I was very proud of Cole and Neil for climbing as high as we did.
Earlier in the day we went to a jade factory and learned how to choose the different grades of jade. There was some beautiful pieces in the shop, but most were out of our price range, plus we didn't want to lug around a bunch of heavy jade for the next two weeks.
After we left the jade factory we went to eat at an authentic Chinese restaurant. The food was very good. As you can see from the picture, it was served family style, which is fine, but they gave us plates the size of small saucers. So I had about 20 servings.
Fish heads anyone??
We had some interesting bus trips through the City. You would not believe the way traffic is here in Beijing. Cars, bikes, pedestrians, mopeds, scooters, buses, trucks--all serving in and out of traffic at their will. Suprisingly not too much road rage, just a few horn honks here and there. There were several times when I saw two cars side by side in the same lane!!
Beijing is a bustling and growing city. There is construction everywhere, especially with the Olympics coming in 2008. That should be very interesting. The people of China are very hospitable to foreigners . They are very fascinated by the kids, because they look so different than the children here.