Bridge over Summer Palace
I've told you how much I love the
colors in Beijing
, right? The things here speak to me in bad, bad ways, calling to me, and enticing me to buy stuff that I don't need.
I don't have space in my backpack to fit masks, paintings, and silver and beaded necklaces. But, I am so tempted, here.
These shoes, for example. I am never going to have a reason to wear Mongolian riding boots in the coming years. Heck, I've been to inner Mongolia and I'm not sure that they use riding boots like these. Still, just look at that gorgeous hot pink embroidery on the feet. I mean, aren't these the sort of shoes that you adjust your wardrobe around? (Honestly, somebody help me out on that one because I am currently living my life in Birkenstocks and hiking shoes .)
And, then, there are things that aren't all that attractive but I just want to buy because where else in the world am I going to find a t-shirt of Obama in a Mao outfit with Obamao written by a person who never learned capitalization? This is a once in a lifetime opportunity, I tell myself, before I sternly haul myself away from the vendors who look at me expectantly.
Summer Palace artwork
Happily, there are places in Beijing where I can enjoy the arts and crafts without feeling inclined to open my purse.
Floating through the river in the Summer Palace
The Summer Palace, for example, is a beautiful, restful site located just outside Beijing.
Gate at Summer Palace
Blues and golds gleam and I want to wrap myself in all that color until I can ward off the gloomy clouds and bursts of smog that perpetually hover over the city. After nine days here, we are still amazed, and overwhelmed by the craziness, diversity, and beauty of Beijing. We could spend months . . . or maybe even years . . . and not see everything. But, it's time to move on. We are off to find the next place in China that will tantalize and mesmerize us.