Be a man

Beijing Travel Blog

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Jade horses
Without getting much sleep, as people were watching DVDs in our hostel room all night. I crashed as soon as I got on the coach for the tour. My sleep was only interrupted by the pre-arranged stops on the way to the wall.

The first such stop was the Jade Museum. I don't know why there is a stop arranged at the Jade Museum, maybe to flog stuff to weary travellers who aren't thinking straight so early in the morning. But at least it gave me a chance to stretch my legs. Next was the Ming tombs. After that was some chinese medical academy/centre. Again trying to diagnose problems with travellers and flog them medicines. I don't think anyone bought it though. The final pitstop was at a huge restaurant where all the tour groups go and have lunch. There must have been at least 50 tables in this one hall.
The Great Wall

The Great Wall itself was pretty good. It wasn't nearly as long as our guide led us to believe. Well not the whole thing. The whole wall is long, but the section we were at (Badaling) was a lot shorter than we thought. I've heard Badaling is the worst section of the wall to visit though, but its the closest to Beijing, so its often where everyone goes. It's quite often very steep in some sections where I literally had to use my hands to climb up the steps. Having forgotten to recharge my camera the night before, I ran out of batteries at the most convienient time after I took my first photo on the wall. It wasn't even of the wall itself, it was the ride that you caught up to get to the wall. So I've actually not got any photos of me on the wall or the wall itself.
How to get up the great wall in style. It looks like something you would find in an amusement park.
Gutted. That's the way it always goes. You run out of batteries at the most inconvienient times. I think its the Law of Travelling. The most amusing thing about the wall is the ride up and down to get to the wall. They literally got some cars and tracks from an old amusement ride and stuck it in there to transport tourists up and down. Its quite strange catching a ride to get to the Badaling section of the Great Wall.

After walking and running for 2 hours along the Great Wall I was knackered. I only ran as me and Tash though we were running late and wouldn't get back in time to catch the bus if we didn't run. But we weren't as far from the start as we thought we were. It must have been quite the sight though. Two people running in the opposite direction along the wall. I'm suprised we didn't fall at all with the snow on the ground and all. I'm so glad I was wearing boots today.

On the way back I was dropped off at Beijing Railway station so I could catch my train to Shanghai. I ended up waiting 2.5 hours for my train. Which gave me ample time to reflect on my trip so far and how much fun I've had with the girls. To be honest I felt I little sad leaving them. But I was also a little excited at the same time because I was leaving them and heading off to the unknown alone.

The train pulled in on time and I eventually made it to the right cabin after a little mix up on my part. Obviosuly the train ticket was in Chinese, and I can't read chinese so I had to interpret it best as I could so instead of going to Bed 1 in Cabin 3. I went to Bed 3 in Cabin 1 until someone politely told me I was in his bed. Haha how embarassing. He told me where to go though. I thing I did notice was that the trains which serviced the cities in China were alot better than the trains they used along the Trans-Siberian route. Or maybe it was this one train. It was like brand new. Everything was clean and tidy and modern. I could definitely get used to this.

PS - the title of this entry is a reference to the old proverb that your not a man until you've climbed the Great Wall.

PPS - It's also a Russell Peters saying. ;)
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Jade horses
Jade horses
The Great Wall
The Great Wall
How to get up the great wall in st…
How to get up the great wall in s…
photo by: Deats