China: Coda

China: Coda

For our last day in China, we opted for a trip to the Great Wall. We were hoping for something less touristy and maybe even hike an unrestored section of the wall. We also were hoping to get there with a relatively simple public transit route. Researching our options and chatting with our host Yuling, we decided on Mutianyu. While… Read more →

China: Back to Beijing

China: Back to Beijing

On the road, 10 days blow through the memory like a mild squall in the night. Two weeks is just enough time to get back your sea legs. Our last night in Xiamen, we decided to go check out a Buddhist temple It was lovely.  We lit some incense And walked around the beautiful grounds for a while. The temple… Read more →

China: Gulangyu 2

China: Gulangyu 2

We made a wise decision with Gulangyu. Our march has turned to stroll.. our blisters to sun licked faces… our stress to satisfaction.  I’ll let the pictures describe the last 48 hrs… Today we head back over to Xiamen… that was nice…

China: Gulangyu 1

China: Gulangyu 1

We woke up in Xiamen and had been reading about an island to the west named Gulangyu… it was apparently only excessible via ferry and had no motor traffic… it sounded lovely… so we hopped on route 51 to the international port (where us non locals need to leave from)   and grabbed a ticket across the channel. One on… Read more →

China: Day 5-6

China: Day 5-6

Up and out of Pingyao with no issues. Jin Yer walked us to the bus stop… what a wonderful host. We then took the bullet train to Xi’an. The train is so fast (around 300 km/hr), smooth, and comfortable…  Tons of legroom and really a joy to be on. I hope to witness a bullet train like these in the… Read more →

China: Day 4

China: Day 4

Pingyao is one of the many walled citys of China. What makes this one so special is it’s well preserved original 1000 year old West wall,  This seems to make Pingyao a major tourist draw and serve A LOT of people. Being here in the slow season was busy… I cant imagine what it would be like in the high… Read more →

China: Day 2-3

China: Day 2-3

As is the tendency on the road, plans changed! We woke up late and headed out toward the Forbidden city via the metro and my “Super Secret Backdoor” into Tien’an Men square… well apparently about 400,000 people also had heard of that one… so we again waited an hour to get through security. Then FINALLY made it in… around 1ish…… Read more →

China: Day 1

China: Day 1

I woke up in our private room in the Downtown Beijing Backpackers Hostel with the rising sunlight shining through the wispy curtains. I rolled over momentarily confused at why my body felt like I had slept the day away but then the excitement of the day and our adventure overwhelmed my groggy brain and my eyes popped open. First stop… Read more →

China: Day 0

China: Day 0

Up at 6 and worked our way west through a decent snow storm…  We grabbed a little food with my folks and caught the South Shoreline train out of Michigan City. For those who don’t know about the commuter train… it is THE WAY to get into the heart of Chicago for the weekend. At $9.50 one way and includes weekend… Read more →

China: Day -1

China: Day -1

There is a time to speak, there is a time to reflect. There is that moment when you know exactly what is right and you do it without hesitation. There are seconds that last forever and exciting times that won’t come fast enough.  All of those seemingly random small moments in my life have culminated into a single point in… Read more →