Saturday, May 17, 2008

an evening on the Great Wall

we spent a very pleasant evening on the Badaling Great Wall. our friends invited us for a gathering at the German restaurant on the wall itself. the restaurant is not open all the time and only accepts bookings for private functions.
Robina like the main branch of the restaurant Der Landgraf at Fangzhuang, south Beijing. It serves excellent German food and beer.
although it was not a full service restaurant due to lack of a full kitchen, we had an excellent spread of cheese, sausages and BBQ and of course, great Bittburger beer.
before getting onto the wall, we had to take a trolley car up the slopes. it was nice to be on the Great Wall in the evening when most tourists are clearing out. At night it was breezy, a little chilly at times and the moon added a poetic touch
we had a lot of fun both on the way up and later on the way down after the dinnerthe party was very nice with many friends catching up on the latest happenings and each others' families. amongst the boys, a mysterious brown bottle of Hungarian cognac and potent Mongolian Chinggis vodka kept the chill at bay.
even our journey from Beijing was full of unintended excitement when our coach was involved in a 3 party "minor" accident. A No. 919 bus was overtaking our coach but a Shandong truck cut into the bus' path and the bus driver had to swerve into our coach's path. Nothing serious happened and there was no serious damage or injury. There was just a superficial scrap on our coach and the bus' side mirror was damaged. but the truck was clearly driving dangerously and the 919 Bus managed to chase the truck down and we stopped by the side of the highway and there was much excitement amongst the coachload of foreigners.
another 919 showed up to offloaded passengers and we carried on our journey while the bus and fugitive truck waited for the cops to arrive. you can see that most of us are quite jaded after living in Beijing for a while, that we don bat an eyelid at such an incident.


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