HUAIROU, Beijing Province:
Went to the wall today with Tony and Rick - the boys we tutor on Fridays, and their mums, plus one of Sarah's students and her parents, and Rick's uncle and cousin. Bit of a shock going in such a big group because we thought it'd just be Tony and Rick and their parents!
It was a really good day - we walked up to the wall - before I've only got the cable car up and down. We went through the Dream Stone Museum, and there was this cave full of stones that had been shaped by water - it was amazing! So beautiful.
When we got up to the wall there was still some snow, in the shady areas, which was great for some photos!
We walked along the wall for about an hour and then got the cable car back to the car park. Sarah's student and her parents went home, and we were invited to Rick and John's grandparent's home for dinner. They made us vegetable dumplings, tofu, beans - it was really yummy!
The flat was very simple - one entire wall was covered with a massive picture of Mao! That may explain why Rick's such a big fan of him! The other wall had a big TV, and there was one small dining table, which they managed to fit 8 people round, surprisingly comfortably!