We decided that today would be the best day to go to the Great Wall and also the Pearl Market. Oh what a day (insert big 'ole grin here)!! Our dear friend arranged for a driver for us and explained to him about our plans. She always repeats it back and has them(driver) repeat. Hoping the expectation is clear on both ends. When our driver arrived in a 5 passenger Chevy we were a bit confused? Atlas we decided to "go with it" and make the best of it. You know.....while in China.... So we SIX adults piled in for the 1.5 hour journey to the Great Wall. The drive to the Wall was soooo cool. I was just soaking in the beauty of China and some of it's culture (despite sitting with one shoulder forward and the other back). When we arrived, it's then that I learned that cable car was the method of transportation up to the Wall! Ok -- for those of you that know me well know that I have a fear of heights and the thought of being suspended by a cable while going up, up, up?!! NO!!
My dear hubby just about couldn't stand the thought of me "staying down" on ground level but I wasn't to be talked into that cable car riding experience (and I know my son and girlfriend are laughing loud as they read this b/c recently they were stuck at the very top of a roller coaster for 15 min. -- the thought of it makes me jittery!!).
I love to "people watch" so I was fine and didn't wander too far from the beaten path as I awaited for them to return. "It was breathtaking", "most beautiful day ever to be on the wall", "an incredible experience" were some of the dialog I heard when we met up again! (They have some fabulous pictures that my friend who lives in China reported in the 10x she's been at the wall, she doesn't have such photos). Again, a blessing from the hand of God!
The ride home for some reason seemed more cramped and uncomfortable (and we had a very light lunch!). It took 2 hours to get to the Pearl Market. Only to discover once there, our driver needed to be at a certain destination in an hour (and it was another hour trip back "home" to Dave and Ev's place. So.... while we got to "sit in the parking lot of the Pearl Mkt.", we were not able to shop or browse.
In reality having a Duck Dinner with our friends promised much mor fun anyway!! We safely got home and rolled out of the compact car and decided the best option was to WALK to dinner. We had a most delicious Duck dinner with many different side dishes we shared from a lazy susan that sat int he middle of our table. Such a FUN and DELICIOUS experience. (thanks Ed and Carol for suggesting!!!)
We enjoyed the beautiful evening stroll back to the house where we made plans for our last day in Beijing (a very short 2.5 days).
All day I felt like I was walking and living in a dream. I was walking around and drinking in the culture, smells, sounds of my little girl's country!! A great day despite some logistical "oops".