Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Hutongs and the city wall

The old city of Shan Hai Guan is fascinating.  It's a hutong and very different than most of the hutongs we've seen in Beijing.  This hutong is mostly a place where people live, work and go to school.  There is one long commercial street but for the most part it's a living community.
The doors are one of the most interesting, especially when they are open and you can see in a little.

View into two courtyards.

This is the mosque.

The dentist...we think!

This goat really needed to be milked.  We walked by them again later and heard a woman asking the owners if she could buy some goat milk.  Talk about fresh!

We saw many pigeons that were released, flew around in a group and then flew back to the coop.  We talked to a pigeon owner and Paul asked him what made the pigeons come back.  Another man said "Food!"

This is the more commerical section.  This couple was pounding peanuts into powder to be made into a kind of peanut cookie.   They were pretty good.

We also climbed the city wall (part of the Great Wall) and had unbelievable views of the city and mountains.

There is both an inner and outer city wall.  In order to gain access to the city, a visitor would first have to go through the outer wall and guard tower.  It was an amazing system of protection.

View of the outer wall and then the  Great Wall creeping up the mountain.

We went to several museums in the hutong-  one historical, one about the making of the Great Wall and one culture museum.  The culture museum was my favorite.

I never get tired of these round entry ways.  They are so lovely.

Model of an old school room.  I am assuming this was for wealthy people.

Wedding chairs.

Mill stones and grinders.  Of course it made me think of the Bible verse about those who lead children astray and that it would be better to have a millstone around their necks than to do that.

Next blog post- why we didn't take the tram  up the Great Wall and what it is like to climb a sheer and unever surface and survive.


India said...

Wow, this is a place I really want to go to!

Sharon said...

Love to read your blog and see China through your eyes. We visited Beijing, Guangxi and Guangdong while adopting our daughter. We will be going back, hopefully in 2012 for our second daughter.