Before going any further, I would be remiss in not talking about the driving in Beijing and Xi’an. We think drivers in the US are crazy, here there seem to be no rules. Staying in your lane does not happen, they literally drive right on top of each other. Crossing the street you have to just walk and they will drive around you. Cars everywhere, Bikes everywhere, scooters and motorcycles everywhere. Just crazy. At a traffic light you would see dozens of bikes/scooters waiting for the light to change. They drove on sidewalks and even the wrong direction. I have no idea why I never took a picture, guess I was just happy surviving crossing the street. LOL
Our flight from Beijing was cancelled and Gate 1 worked hard to get us on another flight. Instead of leaving at 8:30 we left at 2:00. The flight was uneventful but I have to say the flight attendants on China Eastern are amazing. Quick and efficient. After landing we had signed up for a dumpling dinner, Mark will be posting about this next.
After dinner we decided to go for a walk in West Gate Park across the street. It was dark at this point so no pictures. It is amazing how many people were out and about at 9:30PM. People dancing, kids roller blading and many just walking through the park for exercise. The gardens were beautiful and there were many architectural elements and sculptures everywhere; Amazing fountains and people playing musical instruments.
The next morning we visited Xingqing Park. It is a morning ritual for the experienced (retired people) to do their morning Tai Chi and dance. We were invited by the locals to join in the dance and Tai Chi. We had read about this and thought it would. Be corny. It was pretty amazing to join in and experience this custom.
This was the entrance to the park.
We turned left once we entered the park; this is where we were invited to join the Tai Chi.
We met this interesting couple; they wanted a photo with us. Apparently getting your picture taken with a westerner is a thing over here. Happened to us throughout the trip.
After the Tai Chi we continued our trek through the park where we saw a group doing their morning dance; They do this every day.
This was a group picture with some of the locals.
We walked further into the park and came across a group of musicians and singers. They invited us into the center of the group and played 2 songs. Then they played a song we all knew, Jingle Bells.
We both thoroughly enjoyed this visit to the park, experiencing the daily life of the people who live here is what it is all about.
Thanks for reading,