After a visit to the huge breakfast buffet here at the hotel, we met up with our guide Ivan for the day's events.
We started the morning at a jade factory store where I purchased two Zodiac Ox jade pendants for the boys when they are older. I also purchased a jade family ball, it is quite amazing how they make these.
Next we went to the Great Wall. It is quite foggy today so, unfortunately, we were not able to see the amazingness of the wall. We all climbed, over 300 steps, to the first tower, tower number 8. Mom and Aunt Sharon's legs were done by then. Therefore, Ivan and I left them behind to rest and we trekked up another few hundred steps to the next tower, number 9. Then we turned around and worked our way back down. Going down is an awkward task due to the steep steps. Thankful for the many squats I do weekly, my legs felt pretty good. Only had slight shaky calfs when I was done.
Can you find me?
By then it was about 1pm and we could have come back to the hotel but what fun would that have been, there's a lot of Beijing to see and not a lot of time to see it; so, our guide had our driver take us near the 2008 Olympic stadium called the Birds Nest it's architecture was neat, wish we could have gotten a little closer. We also drove by the Water Cube, which is where the swimming events of the Olympics took place. I was not able to get a very good picture of it. I believe it lights up in different colors at night, which I'm sure is very neat.
To finish out our touring for the day, we visited a silk factory store. We learned about how silk is made and that there are two different kinds of silk, single string and double string. Who knew? We saw how they make the silk duvet blankets. I would have loved to have purchased one but they weren't cheap and I just don't have room in my luggage right now.
After returning to the hotel at about 3:30pm we all took a nap. For dinner, we decided to venture out and found a KFC. It took us a while to find it as it is inside a huge multi-layer shopping center. Ordering was interesting but we accomplished it, after being cut in front of at the register multiple times. Thankfully, they have a menu they bring out for foreigners and we were able to point at what we wanted. I think mom and Aunt Sharon were happy to have some "American" fare after our Chinese lunch.
We aren't scheduled to meet our guide till 1pm tomorrow so we will see how productive we are tomorrow morning. Looking forward to the big buffet breakfast again!
Check out pictures of today: http://wewereledtoyou.shutterfly.com/pictures