Built by hand – some of ‘em still in the wall!
10.15.2007 - 10.15.2007 70 °F
There are a couple of places outside of Beijing where the Great Wall of China has been restored for the purpose of tourism. One is the Badalang section which is the most heavily toured and the second is Mutiyanyu. We chose the latter. Everything you’ve heard about the wall is true. It really is kind of unbelievable that this thing was ever built. As you stand in one of the guard towers and look out over this 20 foot tall wall snaking it’s way for miles across steep mountain sides and mountain tops, you think it just isn’t possible that this was ever done by men, let alone by men who had tools from the 13th century. Ancient rumors abound that a not-so-small bit of the mortar holding the massive bricks together is composed of the good countrymen that built it, believe it or not. Perhaps even more unbelievable is that the emperors who commanded the wall be built, thought that this mass would keep marauding hordes out. We know how that turned out. Well, we took in the sites – restored wall, unrestored wall, and the fun touristy things that have been built there to get you up to the wall and back. (a chair lift to get you there and “luge” to rush you down). We let the kids take their skateboards and let them skate the wall. Our tour guide Rebecca thought “Hey, why not?” The boys did it and actually found sections where they could skate the stairs. Here are ra few pics to record out wall outing...
We went to the Kempinsky compound near Badalang that overlooks the wall and is used for Corporate outings and the like for lunch, in f act, Landrover was having an event there. I wouldn’t include it in this entry, but they had a wall made out of peacock feathers in our little private dining room that was astounding, and the food was some of the best we had as well. We drove a looooong way this day and decided we are going to chill on the driving long distance from Beijing from here on out.
The boys have their own blog now and to get their unique POV on the wall and other observations, try http://twobrotherstravel.travellerspoint.com