Today we got our first glimpse of life in Beijing. It’s a beautiful city. We started out the day with a surprisingly amazing breakfast at the hotel. The amount of great food they had at this breakfast blows every continental breakfast I’ve ever had out of the water. After breakfast, we met our guide and two other couples who are adopting with AWAA to start our day of touring. We drove in some crazy (crazy like I’ve never seen before) traffic to the Great Wall of China. The beauty of the wall and the mountains surrounding it just cannot be described. It was amazing. It was also so humbling to know that the structure is about 2000 years old. We don’t have anything that old in America! I truly underestimated the strenuous activity climbing up the wall would be; Dan’s fit bit told us at the end of the hike that we climbed 105 sets of stairs. It definitely felt like it! I was so confused at first, because people kept stopping us to take pictures with me. When the first person waved their camera at me, I was confused because I thought they wanted me to take their picture. Nope, they wanted to pose with me! Apparently seeing a blonde American is exciting for Chinese people.
After the Great Wall, we went to a Jade factory for lunch and to walk around. The way that the restaurants here serve food is family style with a lazy susan in the middle of the table so everyone can spin it around and try different dishes. The food was very good, especially the sweet and sour chicken. After we finished eating, we walked around and looked at jewelry and watch some of the artists making different things out of jade.
Our group then headed toward the Olympic stadium complex. The detail on the building is amazing! We took some pictures and then headed to a Chinese teahouse where we participated in a traditional Chinese tea ceremony. It was so much fun to learn about the different types of tea and how important they are in Chinese culture.
We had dinner with our group (we are so thankful to be on this adventure with these amazing other couples) at a Chinese restaurant and then we collapsed into bed, exhausted, at 7:30 pm. Of course, that meant we were up for the day again for 2:30 am. We’ll probably get used to the time difference just about the time we need to go home! Tomorrow we get to tour Tiananmen square, the Forbidden City, and the Summer Palace. Then, on Sunday we fly to Guiyang, the city Selah is from, and we have Gotcha Day on Monday! We can hardly wait! Please keep praying for us; specifically for our health while we are here and for little Selah's heart. Her whole world will be changing, and that's a lot for a little girl.
All National Parks: Our Travel Bucket list
X Acadia National Park