My wife and I like traveling the world, and I shared the last few weeks our experience in some of our trips.
About China there are thousands of trip advisors, pictures, comments and opinions. My blog will describe our experience, mostly interaction with people.
First, the guides. We had few of them (and our group was limited to my wife and I, so, they could talk) and I will not say their names or places, I do not want to damage their career, eventually. Some were opened from the very start, they did not like the restrictions their government imposed on using internet, or the policy leading for other countries to unjustified mistrust Chinese guys. Other were very patriotic, one guide (talking about history) told us about those ancient wars when the Mongols extending their empire over China, humiliating the emperor. The guide’s opinion was that those wars were actually internal battles since Mongols are a Chinese brand… saying “I do not understand why Mongolia is a different country, after all.” (sic!). Others were more balanced, and told us the stories they were instructed to, about history and different places, but they were more them willing to hear our side of the story. Our position was to stay neutral at all time…
In big cities the regular guys ignored us (in a good way, we were not monkey to stare at), or tried to be helpful. One evening a young lady passing by, stopped us, and talked to us in acceptable good English. “Good evening. If you are interested,” and she pointed along the street, “second on the left there is a church, and they have now some songs in English, outside the church, and tomorrow morning a mass, in English, too.” We thanked her and said each-another good-bye.
In Beijing there is a street where all along (maybe 200 meters) there are stalls with the most diverse food you can imagine; different veggies, all type of organs from different animals (I know what you think, that ones too), insects, well, you name it. We decided for scorpions, small ones since we were not sure how testy they are. I ate it quickly, it was good and crisp. My wife hesitated, and the passer-by locals stopped, looking at her. “Eat, eat, eat” they chanted, smiling. It was fun; she finally had it.
We walked on China wall, a construction that could be seen with the eyes from the moon, and it is one of the wonders of the world. An old lady selling bottles of water in that hot day, told us in a broken English that she will give us for free a bottle of water if we take a picture under the communist flag and keep it. We did the picture for her delight, she was all smiles and cheering. But we payed for the bottle too. Maybe she was very patriotic, or it was a trick to make us buy the water. I hated communism (my blogs in April describe my experience in communist Romania), but I accept the idea that there are people that have different feelings…
In rural areas the reception was different. In Inner Mongolia, that is a Chinese Autonomous Region in north of the country, we had mixed feelings about how locals looked at us. We spent two nights in a campus with yurts, to experience the Mongols’ lifestyle. In the same time with us was a big Chinese group. The owner gave us the yurt near the public toilet of the campus… In the restaurant, the tables were organized nicely for the big group, but we got a smaller and lower table in a corner.
Anyway, we travelled around on horseback, that both of us, my wife and I wanted. The wooden saddle was tough for our back, no helping blankets. I guess they run out of blankets since many other guests wanted to have that experience.
We stopped to a local family that offered tea to passing-by tourists.
A lot of places that the cultural revolution during Mao regime tried to destroy are restored today. History and religion have impressive sites to visit. There are specialized sites the reader may visit… Below are some of our pictures.
In a temple, on display was a tooth, claiming to be a real Buddha tooth.
Hanging temple bear the city of Datong.
DaTong House Screen - Biggest In China