I was incredibly sick with bronchitis the entire time we were in China. Thankfully, when we arrived back form Wuxi, Sophie was kind enough to take me to the hospital. We actually had to go to two different hospitals before we convinced a doctor to give me zithromax. Finally, success! I took my dose and went to bed. Thankfully, it kicked in right away!
Jim and I had arranged for us to have one day to go sight seeing. Sophie hooked us up with a guide named Zhang, and he was excellent. Incredibly knowledgable and a lot of fun. We requested to see Tiananmen Square and the Forbidden City, so he took us there first.
This is the Monument to the People’s Heroes at Tiananmen Square. I should note that Jim and I were freezing our faces off. It was below freezing, and even though we were wearing jeans, it did nothing for us.
Me in front of the Forbidden Palace.
View of Tiananmen Square. It felt surreal being there. On the one hand, it was a glorious experience, and the other, it felt a little awkward because of the brutal history of this place.
It was a windy day. This did not help the freezing our faces off.
Yes, I was bone chillingly cold, but I just couldn’t get over the fact we were here. Everything felt so strange, like we were in a dream! I have never felt like this on a trip before. Maybe because China is so different from Western culture or because there are so many “fake” Chinas like China Town or Vegas or Disney, etc. that I kept feeling like I needed to pinch myself because we really were there! It was also hard to adjust to the idea that we were literally 13 hours ahead of back home.
The Forbidden City is immense. There are so many other pavilions and buildings inside.
These little earmuffs saved my life. I love the jaunty bow at the top.
Look at the details! These little guardians were stationed on all the rooftops.
The entire city was a huge work of art. The intricacy of the details was so impressive. Every piece seemed carefully thought out.
These stone lion heads provided defense for the city.
I had to take a cheesy, “Oh my goodness I’m in the Forbidden City” photo! Such a tourist.
These golden lions were guardians of this temple. They were gorgeous!
Such an incredible sight!
We took a quick break for lunch, and then Zhang took us to the Temple of Heaven. Isn’t this stunning? We were beyond grateful to Zhang for suggesting this. Jim and I were a little hard pressed to name sights in Beijing to see, and the inability to login to most websites made it tricky. Zhang was kind and knowledgeable. We learned a great deal of history about these sights.
Every detail was insane. This is all painted. Incredible!!
Me in front of the Temple of Heaven.
These lion head door knockers?
The ceiling of this was breath taking. Is it wrong that I feel like I need it in our #LHighamHome??
All of these are original wooden beams.
Can’t take me anywhere.
Zhang, me, and Jim at the end of the day. If you ever need a good guide, I can give you Zhang’s information. I think it ended up costing us about $80 a person for a personalized entire day tour! I will be happy to share his information.