November 2008

After Tiananmen Square we made our way to the southern entrance of The Forbidden City in Beijing, the Meridian Gate. From there we would have enough time to walk straight through at a reasonable pace without straying too far from the central route and pick up our coach again about a kilometre ahead of us at the northern entrance, the Gate of Divine Might.

There were impressive pieces of bronzeware dotted throughout the Forbidden City, with guardian bronze lions being the most prominent, and the architecture was quintessentially what you expect to see when you think about Chinese buildings.

I had a good opportunity to start practicing photography of people as well as things on account of there being quite a few visitors there, the majority of which, as with other places we visited in and around Beijing, being Chinese.

At one point I’d taken a picture of two Chinese girls talking to one another when one of them spotted me. I was immediately concerned about what she might say or do, not wanting to start an international incident in a country that needed a visa to get into, but was instantly met with a beaming smile and then a pose. I snapped a picture as quickly as I could and then smiled and bowed my thanks to her. Her attitude and reaction really helped to cement a wonderful visit to a fabulous place.

Some of my wife’s photos from Beijing’s Forbidden City.

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