"The terra-cotta army, as it is known, is part of an elaborate mausoleum created to accompany the first emperor of China into the afterlife, according to archaeologists." ~ National Geographic

Thanks to this farmer...
turned book/photo signing celebrity...
visitors can feast your eyes and cameras...
Once again...
Ren Man's bucket list caught me off guard...
and had me at hello!
My mind is boggled by this treasure.
Until a farmer decided to dig a water well in 1974...
three huge pits filled with terra-cotta warriors, horses and carriages...
lay buried...
Our guide was thrilled for us to experience clear skies
 in order to see the Emperor's tomb in the distance.
Fortunately,
photos were taken on site of discovery before the colors on each warrior faded
 with every passing moment in contact with air.
 Three pits...
have the warriors on display.
Field trip envy did overtake me 
as I watched these young children in awe
and remembered my countless field trips to the zoo!

Fascinating details emerge in the links provided above, and here,
as historians piece together the life and after life of China's First Emperor.
Enjoy the reading and...


"Like our other Schoolhouse projects, the Brickyard uses existing footprints and village structures which were delicately restored to create unique spaces for sophisticated travelers to relax and enjoy the Chinese countryside at the foot of the Great Wall." ~ The Brickyard

Visiting the Great Wall during the Spring...
is always a good idea...
as is the nearby Brickyard at Mutianyu for its comfort and location. 
We savored our walks...
through the small village...
surrounding its grounds.
This Farmer House was one of many...
 trying to entice travelers
 in search of a more authentic lodging experience while in China.
Meandering through the village... 
where its murals of the old...
mingle with the new,
the universal language of children at play... 
 drew me into a true China experience.
I did not, however, experience the Home enema served at the local restaurant.

Meanwhile...
back at the Brickyard...
our mornings...
began with glimpses of the Great Wall,  
standing at attention like a battalion in the distance...
all 5,500 miles of it...
beckoning us to remember its historical significance.
Aptly named, The Brickyard...
once housed a village industry where glazed tiles were made
 during the Cultural Revolution back in the 60's. 
The kiln now creatively houses the toilets.
Oh how I wish I could have gathered a group to enjoy the Mahjong table.

The owners of The Brickyard have thoughtfully incorporated themselves into the village they call home,
  and offer 25 guestrooms on sight as well as 9 homes throughout the surrounding villages.

Well worth a look see.

"Not reach Great Wall, not good man". ~ Mao Zedong

If I am honest with you...
China was never on my bucket list.
Fortunately for my narrow minded mind, 
Ren Man needs to travel to China for work
 and has had a few places in China on his bucket list.
My first tag-along visit took us to Bejing...
 where our first stop was of course the Great Wall...
which is quite impressive once you ignore the fast food and tourist traps.
Although I was tempted with the Oba Mao t-shirt.
From the Mutianyu section of the wall... 
you have three choices of transportation up...
 and four choices down.
This lovely gondola transported us up, up, up...
to the wall...
providing the perfect view of white and yellow bursts of Spring...
dusting the mountainside.
You can of course, walk.
However, much less enjoyable.

There is plenty of climbing...
and jumping once you are on the wall.
And, regardless of what this sign says...
We have a new appreciation and respect for a friend of ours... 
who has run up and down these uneven steps for 26 miles.
Greg...you da man!
The large number of outposts built along the wall...
and the canons still in place are evidence of its past purpose,
however, today it brings together people from all over the world...
to marvel at its historical significance.

I'll leave you in suspense...
 til next post...
 for our journey down the mountain. 


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