Today we visited a few of the famous sites in Beijing with our guide and our new friends, Andy and Eric. Andy is the dad of Gabe who will be adopted along with Joel on Sunday. Eric is Andy’s best friend from college. Eric came to help Andy with Gabe since Andy’s wife Dana is on the home front like Gary watching the children.
First we visited Tian’an Men Square the worlds largest public square and the resting place of the body of Chairman Mao Zadong. We saw many student group’s on tour with their teacher’s in 28 F weather. It was cold but we were well dressed.
Then we visited a small portion of the Forbidden City where in days pasted only the royal family, imperial court and Emperor resided. The Forbidden City has 9,999 rooms. It took 11 year to design but only 4 years to build with a labor force of 1 million workers.
After the Forbidden City we ate a great lunch at a Sichuan Restaurant and off we went to the Summer Place.
The Summer Place was were the Empress Dowager aka Dragon Lady spent her summers in extravagant living. The great Lake Kunming was completely frozen about 5 inches thick and people were out walking on the lake. (Don’t worry Gary I did not walk on the lake). Summer Place looks very different in the winter but is still a beautiful place.
After the Summer Place we went to a Tea House and learned about making and drinking of a wide variety of teas.
We are so proud of Anna as she held up very well with the 13 hour time difference and the REALLY cold weather. Andy made her “best friend list” when he gave her a small Ziploc bag of Jelly Bellies.
Saturday we will visit the Great Wall and the Ming Tombs. Then off to Xian to get Joel.
We thank you for you thoughts and prayers as we will start our real journey to Joel on Sunday morning