Saturday, July 12, 2008

The Cloissone Factory and the Great Wall

When I woke up today, I felt much better and my temperature was gone. The antibiotics must have kicked in.

It was a very busy day. First, we went to the Cloisonne Factory. It was very interesting to see how they made these beautiful vases, plates, pieces of jewelry, etc. To read more about cloisonne, click on this link There is a huge store at the factory. While we were there, we bought a beautiful vase, a dragon figurine, and other souvenirs and gifts.

After visiting the Cloisonne Factory, we headed to the Badaling portion of the Great Wall. Our guide Joy told us that the word "Ba" means eight. Badaling means giving access in all directions. This is the most visited site along the Wall. It was very crowded. However, to say that it was amazing is an understatement. We rode the cable car up to the wall, walked around, and and rode the cable car back down. As you can see in the pictures, the Badaling section of the wall is the steepest section there is. I am also including a picture of what footwear not to wear while hiking on the Great Wall. There were actually women walking around the wall in high heels!

I have found out that a large group of Americans turns into the main attraction almost everywhere we go. Today, we had more people ask to have there picture taken with us. We even had people trying to take a picture with us in the background thinking that we did not notice. It is kind of humorous.

After touring the Wall, we went to a restaurant at the Dragonland Superior Jade Gallery. The food was pretty good. Of course, there was time for shopping afterward. We only bought one thing here and may have bought more had one of the ladies working there not followed us around the entire store. Every time we passed something she pointed it out and tried to get us to buy it.

We are now back in our hotel and are exhausted. We have to be in the hotel lobby tomorrow at 8:30 a.m. to head to the Forbidden City and other sites. It is hard to believe that we will have Michael in less than 48 hours.

Enjoy the pictures. Bill took over 500 today! We will post more tomorrow.

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