By the way, this thing now has over 1.6 million views – thanks everyone! 🙂
Daily Photo – Scarlett in China on the Great Wall
“Why were the Mongols always trying to get into China?” Scarlett asked our guide. It was so cool to walk along here with my kids and have them ask all these questions. This was a very cold morning, and we were the very first people on this part of the Great Wall for the day. This is one of my favorite areas called “Mutinyu.”
In Beijing whilst the Chinese police observe… I love this photo of my two little girls at the Summer Palace after we spent the early morning hiking the Great Wall at the beginning of our 6-week trip around the world 🙂
Daily Photo – Looking Down On Beijing
Here is a view of the master-planned roadway system from the top of one of Beijing’s tallest buildings in the CBD (Central Business District). I notice something funny about the way Chinese governments name areas. They are always so literal and formally translated that there is no magic in the names. One building might be called “Tower of Office” and another would have the name “Newspaper Building”.
I have an Amazon List you may enjoy if you’re doing some last-minute holiday shopping!
And here’s another photo from this amazing opera at the Peony Pavilion in Beijing.
Daily Photo – Deep in the Chinese Opera
What a beautiful experience being inside an authentic Chinese opera! The sights and sounds were all so unusual. Especially the sounds. They were completely foreign to my Western ears, and I hear a lot of different things. Some of the instruments sounded quite shrill to me, but none of the Chinese people seemed to mind, so I figured the problem was with me! 🙂 At one point, I started moving around to take photos, and new opera characters came out of every nook and cranny, including this guy who emerged from the shadows holding all these flickering candles.
This video from Beijing ended up being one of my most viewed videos!
Daily Photo – Ming's Tomb
I spent a day here several hours north of the city at Ming's Tomb. Everything lies along the “Central Axis” in Beijing. That is, if you walk in a straight line out of Ming's Tomb, you'll end up going through the entrance to the Forbidden City. Actually, these tombs are a series of tombs, all oriented along the same axis — you can get a sense of this in the video above.
That there is a special audio commentary along with this photo? You can see it over at http://www.treyratcliff.com/ — hunt and espy this photo to hear it!
Daily Photo – The less populated bits of China
The city grew without changing its core growth algorithm. I don't even feel that old, but in my few visits to China, I can actually see the logarithmic growth. From shrubbery and farmland to concrete and stacking, there seems to be a pre-programmed mushroom-time-lapse strangeness to the shaping. It is all supposed to make sense with perspective and from above, and I suppose it sort of does, but in moments of doubt, it makes no sense at all.
Here’s yet another installment of Facebook Live 🙂 We did this one right BEFORE the one you saw in yesterday’s blog post with Sir Michael Hill.
We’re doing several of these per week. They’re fun and interactive and you can ask me questions live. Be sure to come to my Facebook Page and up at the top where it says “Like” click the down arrow choose “See First” — Also if you like these videos, share with your FB friends! 🙂
More from this scene
You might remember this scene from the video below! That’s my assistant there, Adi, carrying the umbrella. Many Chinese girls carry around umbrellas to keep their skin as white as possible.
Oh, and here’s another picture when her umbrella suddenly got inverted on a windy day!
Daily Photo – Adi with Umbrella
Here we are exploring the ming tombs… In many ways, actually, in MOST ways, she was a terrible assistant. She was super duper skinny and had virtually zero arm strength. She couldn't carry my quadcopter or camera or bag or anything! She said that just carrying the umbrella exhausted her. It was the strangest thing… it was almost comical in its strangeness. It wasn't like she was malnourished or anything. She simply preferred not to carry anything because she found it tiring.
One of my favorite parts of this video below is when Alan Watts talks about China.
Daily Photo – Happy Guy in China
This was the happiest guy in the monastery! I had never been to this one before in Beijing, and I arrived on the day that all the monks we re-supplying with fresh groceries and drinks. This guy was taking all the groceries in, load after load after load. He was so happy the whole time. And then I looked what he was carrying on the last load, and it was a huge crate of Red Bull!
A few people have told me that they can’t access Stuck In Customs from mainland China. Can anyone confirm this?
Daily Photo – This guy doesn't seem so confident in his proposal
I come across so many strange wedding-photography scenes in Beijing. Each one is so quirky and funny… strange outfits, signs, props, everything you can imagine! Since I tend to visit some of the most photogenic places, so do the wedding photographers, but they're always clogging up all the scenes with these strange setups. It's not so bad, I guess… always entertaining to watch. Here's one of those in-betweener shots!