Tuesday, August 29, 2006


China is immense, enormous, gargantuan, mammoth, behemoth, colossal -- now multiply all those words together, and this will not give you a sense of the size and density of the space, city and people in China, particularly of Beijing. Its enormity is spectacular, breath-taking. I believe it's impossible to fathom without witnessing it yourself. Nonetheless, I offer you these pictures as a small token of explanation.

Tian'anmen Square, a pedestrian-only public space covering almost 100 acres (!!), seen from the ground:

The Monument to the Heroes and the Chairman Mao Memorial Hall (mausoleum):

Tian'anmen Square from atop the "Gate of Heavenly Peace," entrance to the Forbidden City:

The Forbidden City or Gugong (Imperial Palace) -- some of its structures dating back to Kublai Khan, but the grand plan of it wholly of the Ming and Qing Dynasties; a labyrinthine structure of over 800 buildings -- viewed from the outside. For five centuries, ordinary Chinese were not allowed to even approach the Forbidden City:

Forbidden City "Gate of Heavenly Peace," on the exterrior, adorned by a very large portrait of Mao (not pictured here for obvious reasons)


Anonymous Exciteable of Chelsea said...

Christene.... wow!
I'm so excited for you having such a mind expanding adventure already. I had a feeling China might have that effect.
I live vicariously through your blog.

Congratulations on the successful Great Wall climb! You must be fit as a fiddle.... knee all better?
So happy for you.
Will email with my excitements re Fall's arrival in NYC.
Lovely British-type rainy weather.... hooray!

First: climbing mountains, then: climbing a Great Wall....... whatever next?

11:50 PM  
Blogger Rachel said...

Chris, you are definitely the master of the understatement!

8:35 PM  

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