Short travel post number one — China, the Great Wall — and some bonus photos.

Several of you asked for more pics of my trip to China and I’m happy to oblige. Today I’m starting with a few outtakes from travel articles I’ve written since returning home. I’ll start my first ‘proper’ China post back at the Great Wall after a little detour.


Travellers the world over share the heady anticipation of ‘firsts’—the first time they see Rocamadour, (the town of the Black Madonna and foie gras) built into the cliff face not far from Bordeaux in France, the first time they make it to Everest Main Camp, the first time they make a pilgrimage to Machu Picchu.

Glorious Rocamadour didn’t disappoint!

Yet some ‘firsts’ can be disappointing. Think about this…As I entered the hallowed halls of the Vatican to gaze upon Michelangelo’s painted ceiling in the Sistine Chapel, a much-anticipated ‘first’, it was not the ceiling but the floor that dominated the scene—wall to wall tourists lying on their backs pointing cameras with lenses as long as their arms to the ceiling while nattily-dressed security guards danced over the inert bodies screaming, ‘No photo! No photo!’

But my last ‘first’ exploded every expectation I’d held since I saw newspaper photos of President Nixon and Mao Zedong on the Great Wall of China in the ’70s—my own ‘first’ visit to the Great Wall, the foremost example of ancient architecture on the planet.

What I dubbed Base Camp at the Juyong Pass Great Wall section.
After climbing the wall, it was good to mosey around here while the thighs tried to stop wobbling.

Getting ready to rock! That mountain top looks a long way away!
Heading for the watchtower at the top of the mountain. Those stairs were full-on killers. We’re all giddily happy to be climbing the wall. Some tell me it was a long-cherished dream, impossible to fulfill when China was closed to foreigners, (wàiguó rén, or ‘big noses’).

This wall is mighty steep and goes forever. It’s a long way to the top if you want to rock ‘n’ roll!!


The top of the section. Sadly, I didn’t make it this far, but the hubs is far more competitive than I am…of course he had to take photos for me!

  • How about you? Do you have any travel ‘firsts’ that never leave your mind?

Thanks for coming by.

I hope you enjoyed travelling with me.

Next post will be on Tienanmen Square and the Forbidden City.


6 thoughts on “Short travel post number one — China, the Great Wall — and some bonus photos.

  1. I read the posts up to the current one on your other blog but I have little to comment as I am not a writer and don’t aspire to become one. I noticed that you had this other blog and traveling is more up my alley.

    I really liked your Great Wall pictures and am looking for more on China. I have not been there and don’t know if I ever will now. Depending on the day, there are trips that I have made that come to mind as favorite, but they change. I enjoyed visiting Luang Prabang in Laos – quite a unique place. But then I think that Odessa in Ukraine was special or the island of Koh Samui in Thailand, or checking a friend’s camels in Dubai, or finally visiting the only French land in North America that is the island of St Pierre et Miquelon in front of Newfoundland, Canada, and I better stop as I’ll come up with more of my favorites.


  2. Gorgeous, Denise! Thank you so much for sharing these photos. I suspect I may never get to China, given that my discretionary income stayed with my old life, but that hasn’t dampened my passion to see the world. If it has to be done vicariously, so be it!

    I’ve been to the Sistine Chapel a couple times. Nightmare. A masterpiece best appreciated in photographs.


  3. Oh, Denise, I’m green with envy – in a good way. With ‘welcome back’ flowers. Such a fantastic trip it must’ve been.
    I haven’t travel much myself, and almost every trip I took was ‘the one and only.’ I visited New York once and was enchanted. I visited London once and loved the culture, the museums, the outbound trips. Other cities were all interesting in their own way, but the best impression was the New York public library. They allow anyone, even a Canadian tourist, visiting the city for 5 days, to get a library card and browse their stacks, read or watch movies inside the library. I watched 3 movies there – all three old ballet tapes with Baryshnikov. I still have the card. It was an amazing experience.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Olga, I’m yet to get to the US and NYC. Hopefully I will one day, but I need a long time so I can see the country and visit blogger friends. I am addicted to libraries and your experience sounds amazing!


      1. Just left a comment on your Blogger post. Yes, pictures larger here though not as sharp. Up close is even more awesome. And answering my question on Blogger, I see I’m following you, but I’m not getting the message of new posts. Ah, maybe I should be checking my second email address. Sigh.

        Until your morning…. xxxxoooo in return from me and Jen

        Liked by 1 person

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