One thing that fascinated me when I researched about the Great Wall of China is that it was used more for communication than for separation. In the days before cell phones, messages could be sent quickly over long distances along the wall using smoke, flares and flags.
These are photos from the reconstructed area called Mutianyu. It is less crowded than Badaling, which is more easily accessed from Beijing. As I mentioned we had a private driver to our hotel as part of Wild Great Wall’s self-guided tour so we did not have to figure out how to get back to the city.
Comparing from the photos I posted last week, Which Way. You can see that the reconstruction and maintenance are a monumental endeavor. The wall is along the crest of the hills and the area is not accessed by roads, the materials are heavy and there is a lot of territory to cover.
Traveling this section there are a lot of stairs, steep and uneven in many places.
Different ages and architecture styles looking up Columbia Street.
Similar view climbing Columbia during the blue hour to catch our bus.
Our favorite watering hole is on Post Alley.
Passage to the waterfront.
Pike Street runs through Washington State Convention Center.
Freeway Park is a pleasant way to cross over I5 which runs through downtown.
I used to go downtown pretty often. Of late I take the whopping 20 minute bus ride two or three times a year. This past weekend I attended a conference downtown so went in twice. That takes me to above my annual average this year.
For a while now I have been really enjoying the beauty of photographs posted by Bren at Ryan Photography. In her November 5th Flower of the Day post she describes how she post processes images using radial and graduated filters in Adobe Lightroom, which I actually have and know, more or less, how to use. So many of the techniques require photoshop or other fancy things I haven’t learned yet. Last week I had an afternoon free from other worries and while the chili cooked I took a few photos from a fall walk around my neighborhood and gave her techniques a try.
I found it to be relaxing, almost like meditation, to play with the light and shadows. A big thank you to Bren for sharing her techniques.
This afternoon I had a serendipitous experience. I was doing my coddiwomple thing after having coffee with my son and his girlfriend. They headed off to work and I just headed off. I tend to wander in a spiral, keeping a sense of where my ground zero is, but at the same time getting farther and farther afield. As I was headed back toward the center I spied a fascinating looking lion. Of the mythical type you often see on either side of an entrance in China. The thing that caught was the colors of the lion. It turned out that it was ceramic and the amazing coloration was from a brilliant job of glazing.
The shop appeared open but empty. I first peeked in through, then pressed my nose against the window to get a good view of the lions and other merchandise. From the shop next door a woman came out and said “Welcome to Shouguang” and invited me into her shop. She was happy to have me take pictures and she and her assistant served me tea. I believe, and I may learn more tomorrow when I visit another of her shops with my son, who will be able to understand her, it is a special collector’s type of ceramic. I am certain that it is gorgeous.
Many happiness peach man.
Dragon (my favorite).
Lucky horses, san ma.
This is one of those times when I couldn’t have planned to do something I really enjoyed, because I didn’t know it existed.
These are pictures of a pedestrian bridge across the Mihe River in Shouguang, a bit to the south of town, one of three I have found so far. It was damaged by floods a couple of months ago, when a typhoon passed over the area on its way to Korea. Being, technically, closed doesn’t stop the local fishermen.
Even though I have a map of town it doesn’t show these pedestrian bridges. Maybe the map is old, as in the US most people seem to use their phone for navigation these days. I like a map myself. It doesn’t have a tiny, hard to read screen, connections to lose, or batteries to die.