Tuesday, September 28, 2010

great wall of china

The Great Wall of China is one of the great man made wonders of the world, and top of my list for this trip. We have already been to Machu Picchu in Peru, did Angkor Wat in Cambodia last month, and now, climbing the Great Wall in China....and of course, we do it in style!!!

Mutianyu is the part of the wall we chose to climb. It's 90 km north of Beijing and stretches about 2 km long. It is less touristy than Badaling and the scenery is top notch. We saw a bunch if panda hats the day before and thought they were super cute. We saw them again walking up, and each bought one for pics!
On the wall, we were attempting to do jumping pictures. This really cute couple asked to help take the picture for us instead of us using a self timer. We also did a jumping picture for them, and i think theirs is better than ours!! Tien took this picture of me in a panda hat...taking a picture of them...and it makes me laugh every time I see it. The girl is so cute, and the guy is just hilarious with his ballerina jump and China hat!!!

stretching to climb the Great Wall!!!
Kat slid into full split after this shot! *_*

see no panda, hear no panda, speak no panda

love this set tien took of kat and i

a pic of the whole Great Wall

literally climbing the great wall!!!

 falling off the great wall
panda FAIL *_*

Friday, September 24, 2010

Thursday, September 23, 2010

exploring china

I stand out in China in this outfit. I fit in a lot better in Southeast Asia where the weather is wicked humid and hot. Flying in, I didn't anticipate the weather to be a nice 75 degrees F with not much humidity at all. It's actually quite similar to California. Here, all the women are covered from head to toe in something. I found it really interesting, watching the women dress. Many are dressed like I normally would in the States, but all bare legs are covered with pantyhose if they are wearing shorts or skirts. More than being conservative, they just don't want their skin to be exposed to the sun. Although Vitamin D is great, it isn't as important as preserving their porcelain skin. As dark as I am right now, I was quite surprised to get so many Chinese locals coming up to me, and telling me I look Chinese. They would gesture to my features and say "face is Chinese." I had this effect on the Thais, the Laotians, and the Vietnamese. Guess I'm adapting to each country better than I thought!

H&M halter, pants from Thailand, bag from Laos, Old Navy flip flops, Aldo sunglasses

Sunday, September 19, 2010

beautiful laos

Can you believe I took these photos from a moving bus, on the way to Vientiane, Laos?!??! I have taken a million before, but none has justified the actual beauty of the countryside. These two somehow came out perfectly clear, and I am so happy about the timing. I randomly snapped a couple pictures, and when I went back to look at them, it was perfectly cropped and got the little boys playing in the pond!

Thursday, September 16, 2010

vang vieng, laos

I never knew about Vang Vieng until we came to Asia. It's one of those places that no one knows about unless you are a backpacker. As soon as we landed in Vietnam, everyone we met told us about tubing and this place, so we decided to come to Laos instead of Burma. The locals basically give you a tube, and tuk tuk you down the river about 10 km away, and then let you into the water. Along the way, you paddle yourself over to the riverside bars that have swing ropes, cheap mojitos, and unlimited Beerlao.

I took a shot of this tequila with fermented bees. It was the most disgusting thing I have ever tasted. The ladies were walking around with a communal cup, and I couldn't resist the challenge. Thank god it was just a tiny shot! And then they sent us off in our tubes down this slide!!! We stopped at every bar down the river!!

Helen is our temporary roomie in Laos. She's from Britain and super fun. We met up with a bunch of other backpackers from Holland, Britain, Scotland, and Belgium for the day. We tubed down together, got separated, and then met up later at another bar.

Tien braved the swing rope!!! She was the only girl to swing back and drop.
All the other girls belly flopped like crazy!

I was being lazy on a hammock, enjoying the majestic mountains surrounding me

overflowing with tubes

The river locals are the sweetest people. They are incredibly quick in lassoing the tubers coming down the river. The British and Aussies have gotten quite good at lassoing themselves after watching the locals do it.

Some of the little boys will wait for you at the end of the river, and will hold your tube hostage until you pay them something. A little boy no more than 10 years old asked me for money after he literally hauled me against the current, but I was satisfied with giving him 1000 kip for the effort.

The last 2 km stretch, we just floated down the river. It started to rain but I was brave enough to pull my camera out of the waterproof bag to snap a couple pics before the rain set in.

Dinner at a restaurant next to our hotel. It overlook the river, and is stunning.
You can see the mountains in the background.

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