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China Trip - Beijing - Summer Palace

A poetic royal playground

Bridge to pavilion

A vast expanse of buildings and gardens set around a huge manmade lake, the Summer Palace was, at one point in history, the private vacation spot of Qianlong Emperor. It is now a recreational park and tourist attraction. And, it is quite picturesque with breathtaking vistas framed by willow trees and carefully placed temples and pavilions set among lush gardens.

Tower of Buddhist Incense

Marble boat – decorative, not functional

Boats for rent

Citizen and soldier

Couple – I love their posture towards each other

Bridge and reflection

17-Arch Bridge in the distance

A highlight of the visit was watching an older Chinese woman walking backwards while “painting” a poem with water along the walkway. She used a bucket of water, and what appeared to be a huge calligraphy brush attached to a long handle. She artfully drew each character on a different square tile along the walk, forming a single long line of writing. There was a certain calming satisfaction watching the beautiful calligraphy slowly evaporate in the spring air, as the woman continued her journey down the path – literally and metaphorically.

Poetic exercise

Poetic characters

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