Nanjing: The Last Hurrah

Our very last large adventure was to the beautiful, beautiful city of Nanjing. Nanjing was once the capitol of China before Beijing and is now known as “the southern capitol”. In my opinion, Nanjing was the most beautiful city we visited in China. The weather while we were there was gorgeous and we got to tour some beautiful parks including Purple Mountain and the Nanjing City Wall. The purpose of this last trip was to visit a scholar that had trained with Dad at OSU and she set up us in a beautiful hotel adjoining a really nice park. It was during this trip I realized how very much I had missed the countryside, nature, and the sounds of birds even. Continue reading “Nanjing: The Last Hurrah”

Hebei #2 – Acrobat World

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On the second day of our stay in Hebei we took a trip to the little-known (yet none the less astonishing) Acrobat World. That’s right folks, a whole world dedicated to acrobats! Well, to be exact it’s a training school for acrobats, but even these students were pulling of stunts nothing short of a 5 star circus. Eli was especially excited for this particular adventure and had been talking about it the whole trip. With all his monkey business, it was easy to see why. Continue reading “Hebei #2 – Acrobat World”

Hebei #1 – Music Town and NYCPM

The next adventure we took-not counting the multiple, tedious, trips around Beijing to get our visas renewed-was to Hengshui (pronounced Hungshway), a “small” city in the province Hebei. The Hebei province sort of “spoons” Beijing so the train ride was only about four hours. The catch was that we took a traditional train there, not the high-speed train we would normally take. This train was dirtier, less private, and much louder then the high-speed trains are, but it was a short ride so we survived. Now like I said, we were told that Hengshui was a “small” city so we were not quite sure what kind of accommodations to expect. When our host Professor Lei checked us in to our hotel we were quite reassured that this trip would not be a Yangling hotel repeat (whose accommodations were a little less then…erm..modern? Sanitary?). This hotel was even equipped with a phone by every toilet so you can even do your business while doing your business! (PS: this small town has a population of approximately 4,340,373…yeah, so small..) Continue reading “Hebei #1 – Music Town and NYCPM”

It’s a Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood

20160930_172417       20160930_174626            On a Friday afternoon in September, we decided to go to the “Hutongs”. Hutongs are alleyways and lanes of old and close together houses that are arranged around a central courtyard. Most Hutongs are found by the Forbidden City. We took the bus and subway to get to there. Once we arrived, we immediately went into a leather working shop. That would be one of the many shops we visited. Here are some of the other shops we saw : a “snuff” shop, many food vendors, amber rock shop, bubble drink vendor, tea shops, and music shops. (We all learned not to drink the dry ice in the bubble drink!) I liked all the food we tried, including lamb kabbobs and the “candied fruit on a stick”. Continue reading “It’s a Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood”

The Great Wall

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Well, we finally made it. And we were so glad we waited. September 28, 2016 was the perfect day to be on the Great Wall. It was a clear day, we got a direct bus ride there, and the Wall was not the least bit crowded. (After looking at video and pictures of the Wall during the holidays we especially realized how lucky we were on this subject!) After an hour/hour and a half bus ride to the wall at Mutianyu we bought on a shuttle bus and went up to the base of the wall. Because it was such a large hike to actually get up to the wall, we decided to take the easier, and more fun, way up. To help me tell the story of the Great Wall, I’ve enlisted the help from the other Ochsner 6 to each tell us about their favorite part of our adventure. Continue reading “The Great Wall”

The (not so) Forbidden City

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We were so ready. We had rented a van. We were all rested up. We had picked out our warmest clothes. We had gotten our snacks packed. We were going to the Great Wall.

The next morning we woke up to a massive wind storm. The Great Wall is on top of the mountains…I don’t know about you, but it blowing off the Great wall doesn’t sound so fun to me. Huh.

We weren’t going to the Great Wall….

So we settled for the next best thing, the Forbidden City. We packed into the van and off we went. Continue reading “The (not so) Forbidden City”