Breathe In And Out...

By ScotNatureBoy

What an entrance!

BACKBLIP: I was unable to blip while I was away in China for over two weeks (blipfoto is not accessible there). I'm attempting to catch up!

Arriving in Beijing in the morning, after some money-changing and a bit of local orientation from our guide Jane, and not yet feeling the brutal hammer-blow of jetlag that would hit us badly over the next few days, we did a bit of exploring. Tiananmen Square and the Forbidden City were only 20 minutes easy walking from our hotel and were an obvious first excursion for us. We happened to arrive in Beijing while the main congress of the Chinses Communist Party was meeting to choose a new leader for the next ten years and to set the country's political priorities for the next five years. And, as the Great Hall of the People where this was taking place lies on one side of Tiananmen Square, police and military security was very high. As two big-nosed Europeans, we were left alone but we saw lots of random paper checks and bag searches. As we were there around dusk, the area was very busy with Chinese sightseers, gathered to watch the daily ritual of the Chinese flag being lowered and marched precisely into the Forbidden City. We caught the end of that and then the crowd cleared sufficiently for me to be able to take this photograph of the South gate into the Forbidden City (which will feature again in a week or so in my blipfoto timeline). Note the huge portrait of Chairman Mao, the Great Leader, still much revered by many people in China. What an entrance (and what a great entrance to our time in China!).

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