Wow!!!!!!!! I'm sitting here trying to describe our day and all I can come up with is WOW. As hard as it may be for some of you to believe. I am speechless. Trying to find adequate words to describe what we saw and did today is very difficult.
After breakfast we took a walk to a place recommended by Yulin called the Yong He Gong temple. It is a huge complex of buildings that were built in the 1700's. There were many, many people burning insense (insence, incense....they all look funny too me, and I'm too tired to think about it...you know what I mean...) and praying. Looking at these old buildings and the details in the workmanship, it just simply amazing. We sat on a bench at one point and just soaked in the history. There were many, many people there but there was this strange feeling of calm and peacefullness. Inside one of the temple buildings there was this 100+ feet tall statue of Buddha that was carved from a single sandalwood tree.
Next we walked to the Drum tower and Bell tower. Both old, old buildings with very long, very steep stairs to get to the top. As hard as it will be for you to believe, at the top of one tower was a huge bell, and at the top of the other were some drums!!! We saw a demonstration by some drummers that was very cool.
On the way back to the hotel we stopped for a cold TsingTao beer (or two) at a funky little bar that was attached to a restaurant.
Tonight we went for dinner with Yulin and some of the others from our "Ottawa Crew". Just before we left the hotel we saw Adrian and Debbie (another Ottawa Crew couple) arrive from the airport. They are heading early tomorrow morning to meet their little girl in Mongolia, and they were fried from the flight, so they decided against joining us. We will see them again on Friday when we get back to Beijing. The restaurant was a beautiful place, and Yulin ordered us all kinds of stuff. She warned us before we got there that it was a bit more expensive than the night before (which was around $5 per person).....it came to a whopping $10 per person. Food in the restaurants...outside of the hotel of course..is really cheap. I am getting TsingTao at the grocery store for 50 cents a can!!!! It has me thinking of moving here.
Two more sleeps until we meet Clarissa!!!! I wonder what she is doing right now!!
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