4 Banqiao Guesthouse
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... big too that it rarely feels crowded. Although, February is a quieter time for Beijing due to people who work here travelling to see family for New Year.
In class the other day, as a break from Mandarin we went outside and did some Tai Chi. It was different to the Tai Chi I'd done before - the lady teaching us said it was mainly for older people. Also, we had Bella (who works with the ImmerQi team, and is Chinese) come into a lesson and teach us Mandarin ...
... I think PKU is paying for us all, as our student guide bought all our tickets - and then started the climb. We made it up several towers. It wasn't too hard, but because we were wearing so many layers, it was difficult to lift up our legs enough to get up any steep steps. It was also ridiculously windy, and freezing cold. It was hard work, but not too bad. It was quite exhilarating. At one point, Ned's glove came off - possibly to work his camera or ...
It took us about 1.30 hrs to reach The Wall at Mutianuy area which the hotel concierge recommended when he booked our driver for us, this is supposed to be a much less busy starting point than Balading.
We purchase tickets for about £25 for 2 which includes the Wall access & cable car. Off the cable car we join the Wall at Tower 14 and decide to walk 'up' to Tower 20.......which looks like it could far enough. It's now very hot!!!
It's absolutely breathtaking ...
... remotely on this scale. There was nothing forced about any of this, and there is no doubt about the strong sense of community that exists. I haven't checked but it wouldn't surprise me if the rates of dementia were much lower in China as a result. It's also to be hoped that this is a Chinese tradition that survives the westernisation of everything, but you rather suspect it won't.
I was interested to learn that the Temple of Heaven ...
... do some warm up exercises: neck stretches, lunges, etc. He then began teaching them all some movements, namely how to punch correctly and the position your body is supposed to be in. Again, I had to take pictures of this entire thing. He then split everyone into pairs to practice their punching with each other. It became pretty apparent who cared about kung-fu and who didn't...some people weren't even trying at ...