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Leaving our new campus home in Chongqing was bittersweet. We left as the sun rose and flew to Beijing where we indulged in some American cuisine and walked on the Great Wall. For lunch we needed to be quick so we decided to grab McDonalds. At home you can find a McDonalds on practically every other block but here in Beijing we struggled and our quick meal turned out to last a little longer than expected. 

Our flight was also slower than expected. We had to sit on the plane for an hour and a half before it finally took off. Once we were in the air though the view was pretty spectacular. I was able to see where the two rivers collide and locate Downtown Chongqing where we looked through expensive stores on an earlier day. One river was brown and the other green so from above you could see the division whereas from the ground it was hard to tell when we were there. Traveling has ruined my suitcase and Isaac had to fix my zipper today for me. I thought I was going to have to buy a new one after all its been through but luckily with the help of my pocket knife he got it fixed. After worrying about it not working, I scared him and almost hugged him for his good work! I'm relieved I won't have to buy a new one right now! 

The Great Wall was not the flat, easy to maneuver on, lets take a stroll type of wall like I expected! It was more like strenuous, straight up stairs, and scary heights! It was all worth it though for the views we saw, and the towers we went in. It was neat to see the wall curve around the mountain tops. I have to say though after the last few days my legs hurt worse than even after some of the worst sport practices I've been through! It's all worth it though for the experience and the great things we are seeing. On the wall I liked seeing the locks inscribed with names and heart shaped locks symbolizing a married couples commitment and love. Married couples come to the wall to hang a lock along some of the chains found. Apparently the divorce rate is going up in China so this is a new trend. 

As we left the wall we encountered our first traffic jam! It was bumper to bumper vehicles slowly creeping along for over an hour. Most of us slept during that time or looked at the cool architecture and stores like "Wu Mart." The bus driver had to be super patient to make it through the traffic! We were happy to see our new nice dorms and get settled in again. 

Tonight we ran in the rain heading home from dinner!  We caved in from our Chinese food diet and had Pizza Hut! It was just what we needed to get a taste of home. Hopefully tomorrow clears up so we can accomplish our full itinerary! It's a busy day full of a lot of attractions. It'll be a Birthday I'm sure I'll always remember! 

Things I learned today: 
- There are no car seat laws for children. 
- People are used to tourists in Beijing so less stares come our way. I only had one man and a family ask to take a picture with me. I felt like a model with all the pictures the family asked to take! 
- A lot of the street venders in Beijing don't pay taxes so they illegally sell food. Tonight we saw a whole street of them pack frantically and rush away as the police came. 

 


Comments

Barbara
06/17/2013 7:50am

Hey, that Great Wall was pretty scarey! I remember old people breezing right by me like it was nothing! And the girls in three inch heels going up and down it like they were going for a little walk. Also I remember seeing moms and dads on motorcylces in that crazy traffic with their little babies and kids on their laps!

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