Today the Journey East group went to the Great Wall of China. We had to wake up at around 7 o’clock and eat breakfast. My roommate and I woke up at 4:30 in the morning and just watched movies and fell back asleep until about 6 when we decided to go get breakfast. When we got down to the dining hall we both gawked at the amount of food that was there; eggs, bacon, fruit, sausage, all different kinds of meat, and juice. The problem was that we had to eat all of it with chopsticks and some of the food was super slippery so it was a challenge. The next thing was the bus ride, we were all super stuffed and full so the ride was a little mellow, but it got a lot better when someone pulled out a speaker and we listened to awesome songs for the two-hour ride. When we finally got to the wall, we were all amazed by how large it looked, and we were still looking at it from a distance. We had to take a bus up to a gondola, which took us to the wall. The gondola was a little scary because when you got to a certain point you were going up at very steep angle.
After the gondola ride, we finally get on the Great Wall of China. A group of us decided we wanted to go to the highest point that we could see. We eventually reached the stairs that went to that point. When you looked up at them, you could not even see the top. Climbing them made my calf’s burn and my heart race because of the physical strain. I climbed the stairs and looked out and you could see all these sharp rocks and the drops of the mountain. The view was worth the work. Going down was almost as hard as going up because of the steepness. On the walk back, I took my time to really look around and I realized how beautiful the wall really was.
When I finally got back on the bus, I took some time to reflect. I realized I may never get a chance to go back and I really need to appreciate everything I am seeing. I’ve done some cool things in my life and walking on the Great Wall of China will rank among the best of them. If I ever get to return I would love to go explore more. After all, the wall is 21,000 kilometers long there’s lots of new things to find, and today we walked about 8 kilometers (.0004%) of it.
After the Great Wall we visited the Art District. It was busy and crowded. I was expecting just boring museums, but it was not what I expected. There was graffiti that added color to the boring walls. Many of the people were dressed in trendy fashions. I wandered around with friends and explored. We found gelato, crazy artistic paintings, knock-off supreme stores and expensive things. I am not a city guy, but it was nice to explore and see new things.
It was a tiring day and we had to go back and pack our things to move on to our next leg of the journey.