Although I’ve not finished posting about the trip to southeast Asia in 2015 I think it’s time to do a post about China. It’s almost 2017, I’ve really fell behind. So let’s start thinking about China. China China China, we spent almost half a year there and I’ve neglected to talk about it on here! We loved our time living in China, I have no doubts I will return – students became true friends and saying goodbye to them wasn’t fun, China has a little place in my heart now. It’s Sunday, I’m lazy and not feeling up to doing a long post about Chengdu, the city we lived in, so this will just be more of a photo post about the Great Wall. The obvious place to start blogging about China! Look, here it is…
Perhaps the Great Wall is the first thing a person thinks of when they hear of China, maybe smog/fog isn’t far behind. As can be seen in above picture. Unfortunately grey and gloomy skies a regular occurrence. They are the one thing I didn’t like about China. The weird little things like kids going to the toilet in the street were tolerable, pollution not so much! Take the world’s biggest popular and add X number of factories that make literally everything the world uses and there’s going to be a lot of pollution. Said pollution has negative consequences – maybe 1,000,000 premature deaths a year apparently. Another (less significant, admittedly) consequence – tourists don’t get to enjoy attractions to their full potential. The Great Wall was very cool, I’m glad to have ticked it off the bucket list etc. We went to a part that receives fewer tourists, it’s further away from Beijing and less renovated than others – we only had to share our bit of the Wall with our tour group so that was a huge plus. I couldn’t have left China without doing it, that all said – it wasn’t my favourite thing that we did whilst there. The Eiffel Tower truly took my breath away (for want of a less cliched explanation), I’m not sure the Great Wall did.
(I had to represent the Arsenal on the Wall, BRITZ ABROAD!!!!1)
As I said, the lack of other tourists was fantastic – some of the pictures on Google make the Wall look like a nightmare, people literally crammed in like sardines. We were able to appreciate the size of it, stopping for breaks to look back. Breaks were needed, some bits were not easy to climb! The steps were steep and some bits were a bit dangerous and crumbly but it felt quite authentic at least, the bit that gets loads of tourists was rebuilt in the 80s, apparently complete with metal handrails. Forget going there. All in all I’d probably give the experience an 8/10. With a blue sky, who knows?!