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Thursday Thoughts

So, it was raining and …not at all what we had hoped for. This fourth visit to China. As the days went by I adjusted my mind to the drizzle and the cold. What would I do to rewire my thinking and focus?

I started to focus on people and details. To lose myself in details would most certainly reduce the weather conditions to the margin of my thinking.

And China is a country of exquisite details. Walking into the Forbidden City, I had made my decision – this was not going to be an ordinary visit. My previous ones had been made in great awe and many photos had been taken of the splendour here.

I started to focus on the little things, and not the whole city and its buildings.

I focused on the magnificent marble bridges…

The vastness of the open spaces…

The 9 or 11 small protectors on the roofs…where the Emperor resided.

I saw my chances to for once – not rush, I had been here before – but to enjoy the people too. My chances…not to go with the crowd. ..but to turn around and look at everything they were rushing by.

Endless labyrinths – but my thoughts had made their way out of them.

I went to see the Imperial Garden and its wreathing branches. But the garden was so crowded that I could not walk there. Could not stand under the trees without being pushed and knocked around.

My thoughts…went flying up in the canopy…

…and down again. Restless. I imagined my forest at home. I tried desperately to find some peace, but had to admit that in this garden of extreme beauty, it was impossible.

I think I learned something new this day. Even in trivial issues, it is always possible to rewire, to think new, to accept and find new ways. Being a teacher is the synonym of flexibility and thinking new, but when it comes to traveling, I am not used to this much bad luck with the weather conditions – for so long a time. Maybe easily overcome for an ordinary trip, but for a long journey in a faraway country – more difficult.

I was very grateful I had been here before, seeing this ancient country in all its splendour. So, I recalled the Ditan park back then, in golden Ginko leaves, and the silent morning gymnastics.

It is a very special country, China.

45 comments on “Thursday Thoughts

  1. This was an incredible post Ann-Christine, the way that you presented details of what you saw had me seeking them out as well. The young woman leaning against the pole in the first photograph was extraordinary.

  2. I enjoyed reading this post, and the comments. I once visited York Cathedral (or is it called York Minster?) in the summer, and it was the same, tons of tourists body to body, certainly not the idea of a cathedral experience. No one was pushing though. Weather the same, horrible rain, and I was trying to visit this magnificent place with water in my shoes and feeling freezing cold.

  3. I’m so happy to have seen this post today. I’m going to Beijing in April. I’ve heard how crowded the Forbidden City is and I’ve been debating whether I even want to step inside. But your photos are so enchanting, so full of lovely detail, that now I know I’ll have to visit.

  4. Lovely shots, Leya. I especially love the photos of the magnificent tree! The weather this time of year is definitely not good for tourists – October or March/April are usually good times to sight see.

  5. Oh I hope the weather improves for you Tina, it sounds a bit miserable 😞However I love your shift of thinking and agree that getting lost in the details can distract us away from things we don’t want to notice! Lovely photos as always✨💕✨

    • The first time, when I was young, I so much wanted to see the Great Wall, and to walk on it. I also wanted to see Xi’an and the terracotta army. The Wall was just as great as in my dreams, but I caught a severe cold and went to the hotel doctor in the hope of getting something for my cough. I trusted Chinese medicine, it has a good reputation in Sweden. But oh…I was totally knocked out by it and could not leave my bed for 24 hours (wonder what was in those pills…?) So, we missed the flight to Xi’an. That is why we went a second time years later. All trips to China is directed through Beijing.
      The third time Beijing was the starting point for the jouney by train to Tibet. This fourth time we went for the cruise on Yangtsekiang. Startoff in Beijing as usual.
      A great advantage (or not) is the possibility of following the delvelopment and great changes Beijing and China are going through.

      • I can imagine!

        Jag vet att många litar, nästan blint, på kinesisk medicin och andra behandlingsmetoder i Sverige (och här med, för den delen). Och varför inte?! Den är uråldrig, så säkert gör de mycket rätt. Men lika säkert finns det två sidor av det också, så Du kanske fick nå’t riktigt dunderpiller den där gången. Jag hade en lite bloggingkompis i Kina ett tag … hon var 64 år då (det är länge se’n), skrev utmärkt engelska måste jag säga, fast i början hade jag intrycket att det var ett barn, eller en ungdom, som skrev. Det kan bli så ibland. Hon köpte en kamera och började ta bilder av sina omgivningar … väldigt intressant att se vardagen. Sedan flyttade bloggandet till en annan plattform som hon inte fick tillgång till och jag tappade kontakten, tyvärr.

      • Synd! Jag förstår dock inte hur hon kunde skriva så att du fick tillgång till det? Man har inte tillgång till nätet alls i Kina. Inte Google, inte facebook, inte bloggen. e-mailen kunde man få att fungera dock.
        Det hade varit fantastiskt roligt att ha en bloggare därifrån annars. Kanske det var före man stängde av?

      • Jag ska kolla på Flickr och se om hon är kvar där (det är ju också Yahoo). I så fall ska jag försöka återknyta kontakten. Jag har en annan, online kompis (svensk/dansk) och han reser runt hela världen mest hela tiden, för ett stort kameraföretag. En gång när han var i Kina, tog han en bild av Kinesiska Muren med sin iPhone … det var en urdålig bild och alla hans kompisar gapskrattade på Facebook, eftersom han jobbar för ett kameraföretag LOL

Halva verket är läsarens - så, vad säger Du? As the second half is the reader's - I'd love to have Your line!

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