So to continue our adventure in China, we made our second stop the GREAT WALL OF CHINA. People had told us to not go on a weekend because it was going to be crowded, but we wanted to see it so bad we decided to go on Saturday. (and there are people EVERYWHERE ALL the TIME, so we figured no day is better than any other).
We had called a driver that was recommended to us that spoke English and set up that we would be coming and wanted to go to the Great Wall. We were planning on using him one of the other days as well. HOWEVER, on the day we called him he said that the price was 200 RMB higher because the Wall is “in the mountains…” Was it not in the mountains a week ago when we called? RIDICULOUS! Needless to say, we told him to forget it and decided to take the train out to the Badaling portion of the Wall.
Badaling is the most “touristy” section of the wall, originally we had wanted to see one of the other areas. BUT after the driver trying to rip us off, we were not really keen on trying a taxi or tour group that stops at every jade shop between the hotel and the wall. The train was the best way to go. It was only 6RMB (1 USD) and easy to use. We rode the subway to the train station and then waited in line only to find out we were in the WRONG line. See what happens when you cannot read the signs or understand the incessant instructions being yelled into the station’s loud speaker.
We got us upstairs to the correct place, but the guy was “on his break” or so we guessed as we watched other people talk with him. We were the second people back—although lines in China look orderly, where in the Philippines there is no such thing as a line at all, as soon as the lines are opened people force their way in front…so we stood our ground while the kid supposedly selling tickets sat there. We waited and waited and waited. He laid his head on the desk, played with his hair, cleaned out his pockets, picked his nose—with TWO fingers—and we were still standing. I took photos of him at different intervals, I wanted to take a photo of him with the fingers up his nose but Lady Hiva told me to stop taking his photo! HAHA..
|The line for the train...can't read anything|
We finally got our tickets then went and stood in another line to wait for the train to load. Luckily we brought snacks in my bag and books because this trip was becoming longer and longer. Finally the gates to the platform opened and people started RUNNING…Lady Hiva said, “Why are they running?”
“I don’t know, to get a seat?”
“Should we run too?”
“Why not?” and we took off running after I snapped a few photos. We laughed the entire way! And we got a seat!
|Running down the platform|
|Lucky to get a seat|
|They are still running|
|They look still, but they are running too|
The Great Wall was great! There were several people, but it was still amazing to see something that we learned about growing up in history classes. We climbed up and felt the beautiful breeze on top. I can only imagine how cold it must feel during the winter. Lady Hiva laughed at all the women that wore high heels to climb the Wall. It is stone straight up and down…but hey the things we do for vanity! HAHA
|First glimpse of the wall|
As we traveled Lady Hiva and I loved to read all of the t-shirts and signs to see the English translations. Some of them did not mean anything, other were hilarious. One shirt in the market just had a bunch of random letters and an American Flag, I asked what it was supposed to say and the shop girl said, “It not say anything. It only letter.” Some of them were English words but the phrases were nothing like, “Testostrone Am Fat” Or the signs that said things like, “Young and Oldsters beware,” at the escalator. Or the restaurant selling “Hot Man meat.” HAHA…
We spent more time exploring other back roads and then of course went to another market. Lady Hiva is getting better about bargaining and would start to walk away if the price was not good. One lady yelled at Lady as she left, “What is WRONG with you?!” HAHA…we got a kick out of that, she must not have known how rude that phrase is in English. Another girls was trying to get us to come buy and she said, “Come buy. You come look! I have American fat sizes!” LOL….
|Down a backroad|
|At it again...this girl is addicted|
The last place we stopped for the night was Wanfujing street to do some shopping and stop at the night snack market. They sold everything from souvenirs to insects and slugs on stick to eat. The scorpions were still moving their little legs…that must feel great going down!
|Green Coconut of course!|
|Fruit covered in sugar...I thought it was ice...|
|SO NASTY!! I spit it out and threw the rest of it away|
Once again, we went home feet aching and tired...