Pictures for Day – 1 (go read the written post first cuz it explains the pictures)

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Countryside seen from the bus window as we drove toward Taian city

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More countryside, we saw a lot of greenhouses like this one, though this was the only one I saw with a guy on top of it ;)>

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More countryside, most of the buildings in the countryside look like this, square concrete or mud with these red brick tiles.

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Lol, a classmate catching a nap on ledge behind the back seats of the bus. It is actually a quite comfortable spot, I took a nap there too later that day

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The mud from our muddy adventure, you can see that it is deep and sticky.

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The horrible stretch of mud that can hardly be called a road, and a truck preparing to wind it’s way through it. P.S. those puddles are deeper than they look, like a foot deep or more.

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The local villagers turned out to watch as we tried to extricate the bus from the mud and turn it around. I think they found us very amusing and silly, well I also found us amusing and silly and I thought that our huge, pink bus was absurdly out of place on this muddy road.

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The bus driver and one of our tour-guides throwing rocks in the puddles so we could ‘drive through them’. However, it seemed to me that we drove through them perfectly fine on the way in, why couldn’t we do the same on the way out. But hey, I’m just a dumb American, what do I know.

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a beautiful scene of a road and mountains that we passed on our way to the temple.

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A view of the temple tower in the distance as we climbed up to the temple complex.

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A temple guardian, situated inside the gatehouse. There was another one opposite this, so you had to pass between two menacing statues in order to enter the temple complex. These statues were about 15 feet tall.

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Standing beside an instance burner outside a temple building. As you can see, I am not without my faithful insect net, which I take with me everywhere. And I’ll have you know that, yes, I did find some bugs on this trip, no, the chinese didn’t mind, yes, I felt like an idiot lugging it around, no, that didn’t stop me from taking it, and yes, I’d rather look a fool and catch insects than look normal and watch the insects buzz/fly/run gleefully just out of my reach with no way to catch them (so there ;)>).

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The main temple

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The center statue inside the main temple, I believe it is Buddha but I could be wrong, and I think he is sitting on a flower, which could signify any manner of things. Sorry about the picture quality, it was very dark inside.

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The inside walls of the main temple. All the walls were covered in thousands of statues of buddha, I suspect each one representing someone who donated money or who was a monk. Also all around the walls were life-size statues of famous monks/philosophers/etc.

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A view of the “guardians” of the roof. All traditional chinese roofs have small figures of creatures carved on them to protect the building and ward away evil things.

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The tower, quite tall and absolutely depressing to look at because I wanted to climb it and knew I couldn’t. As far as I know no one is allowed in it, it might not even be safe to climb in. Sigh…it would have an amazing view.

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A beautiful picture of the sun setting amid the forest canopy. As I said we visited the temple in the evening and the haze/humidity did wondrous things to the color of the sun.

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The forest of stuppas, which are really just gravestones. I am not sure, but I think maybe the tradition is to burn the dead person and put them in a jar and bury that, which would account for the closeness of the stuppas. But I’m not sure, just a guess really.

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A group picture outside the temple complex.

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One last glimpse of the sun as it sank to the west. And yes that is a telephone wire.

One Response to “Pictures for Day – 1 (go read the written post first cuz it explains the pictures)”

  1. Dad says:

    So I’m visualizing the net, the bugs, the … container/killing jar/whatever. What did you put them in for hours until you got back to a freezer?

    What’s Chinese for bug catcher?

    Love, 🙂

    P.S. Which instance did the instance burner burn, BTW? (can’t visualize this- there’s an instance of something, and it’s burning…)

    🙂

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