i hope everyone enjoyed their mid autumn festival vacation :), once again, i'm not sure why china celebrates autumn. it does not look like autumn. autumn is my favorite season, especially at st. joe's - everything is so pretty. here, not so much. the weather is finally getting autumn-like, which is nice. but leaves are still green sky is still smog, etc. however i shouldn't be complaining, considering i got outta three days of classes.
since we had a few days off we decided to do something different. my friend taylor's tutor invited her to go camping on the great wall for a night during the break. mariana and i agreed we'd join them. i like camping!, it sounded fun! we took a subway to a bus then we were picked up by our host family and driven to a tiny little farm village. it was the most adorable thing i've ever seen. this little farm was run by a family. it was tiny. prolly half the size of the property a normal american family owns. they had a tiny little garden where they grew vegetables, a small indoor kitchen, two bedroom-like rooms, and a guest room with three beds, a tv, and a couch. taylor's tutor, jessie, taylor, mariana and i stayed in the guest room. i loved it the second i got there it was so cute and simple! the four of us walked around the village exploring. even though there wasn't exactly much to explore. mostly houses, a restaurant or two and one hotel. after our walk we all took a nap while we were waiting for dinner. dinner was delicous!! it tasted so fresh. we had lots of veggies, which were all freshly picked from their garden. it was so yummy. it was a nice change to the normal greasy, fried beijing street food we're used to eating. ahhh delicious!! they served us wine, mooncakes, and the best tea! mmm it was great. the four of us hung around, played cards, learned chinese chess!, and watched some chinese tv. we went to bed early to prepare for our long journey along the great wall the next day.
damn you great wall of china. that is all i have to say. we were very close so with jessie as our leader we walked to the great wall of china, sounds like a piece of cake considering the many experiences i've had with this notorious wall. LIES. it in no way shape or form was a piece cake. it was a mountain. we legitimately climbed a mountain to get the great wall. i thought the great wall was bad, man was i in for a real treat. i know i am often known for exaggerating or making sarcastic comments; however in no way am i exaggerating or being sarcastic when i say we climbed a mountain. we kept going higher and higher and higher. the "path" we were walking was full with overgrown weeds and grass and also looked like it endured a rock avalanche a few days before. we went mountain climbing. it was brutal. thank gosh i have climbed the great wall before or else i don't think i would've been able to make it. however once we finally got there it was so worth it. this part of the great wall was beautiful. we seemed to have escaped the infamous beijing smog, it was a clear blue sky and we even saw a few clouds!!
unlike the first great wall TBC took us to, the steps were even, it wasn't as steep. it was great. while walking the wall, taylor, mariana, and i kept saying how much better this part of the wall was. continuously. "why didn't TBC take us to this part of the wall?" "this wall is so much nicer and easier to climb than the other wall." etc. etc. we were having a blast, it was the perfect weather, we were singing, it was great. we decided not to risk an early death by climbing down the mountain so instead we took the cable car which was pretty, we got a nice aerial view of the wall. once we got off i turned to mariana and taylor once i had realized our slip up. "uh this is the same exact wall." they both responded wiht no no no its not, they all have vendors like this at the end. no way this is the same wall. we continued to walk then we all looked at each other and we knew it. after the continuous complaints we realized that TBC in fact had taken us to the very same wall. least to say we got a few good laughs.
after a long walk home and a delicious lunch we packed our things and began the journey back. awful. absolutely awful. we were stuck on a crowded bus for an hour, standing. and to say crowded is an understatement. it was packed. you could not move. people were on top of each other. never again, never, ever. especially since they don't believe in deodorant in beijing. it was pretty bad. fortunately, we survived in case anybody was worried.
even though we just finished the mid-autumn festival vacation, this morning after my chinese class marked my week-long national day week vacation, oh china and your wonderful holidays. we have a week off of school! it feels wonderful! i'm beginning to think i'll be experiencing vacation here more than i will classes, and i'm not complaining. i'm even more excited because my mom, dad, aunt, and will are coming to visit me!! they come in tomorrow night and we'll be hanging out in beijing for a couple days then their going to travel all around china. and during the end of the week i'll be meeting them in shanghai! i'm so excited. except for the part where i will be dragged to the great wall of china AGAIN. kill me now. so i hope all you americans enjoy you're week of school because i will be doing no work whatsoever :) seeeeeeee yaaaaaaaa