81. Going to THE GREAT WALL

81.  Going to THE GREAT WALL

We liked being in the front seat of the lead bus of our eight bus convoy on the way to THE GREAT WALL OF CHINA.  Pian was our driver again.

Maneuvering through traffic of bicycles as cars – we were glad to have a police escort that led the way with sirens wailing, flashing lights, and policemen waving their arms out the windows.  Radio-alerted police stopped traffic at intersections all the way for forty-eight miles!

At one point the lanes ahead were full, so the police car crossed over into on-coming traffic waving to oncoming traffic to merge into one lane.  What an exciting ride!

Part way there, we passed a tourist souvenir store, then discovered we were supposed to stop there.  The police waved us through a U-turn — all eight buses, and back to the FRIENDSHIP STORE.

The store had some amazing things for sale.  Paintings, huge vases, sculptures, and life-size figures.  A ship carved out of green jade was an example of the craftsmanship of the Chinese people.  This store catered to well-to-do tourists!

We could see THE WALL from the bus as we approached.  THE WALL snaked up the ridges and along the top of the mountains and disappeared in the haze in the distance, miles away.  Guard towers commanded THE WALL every hundred yards or so.  THE Wall is 4000 miles long, took 300 years to build, 200 years before Christ, when ancient Greece was flourishing.

At the base of  THE WALL, I left my walker at the bus and took my cane.  I looked at the steps leading up to THE WALL, and the steep incline up, and wondered how I would get up since there was no handrail?

Next week: Climbing THE GREAT WALL for an amazing experience!