Trip Start Mar 14, 2006
374Trip End Mar 15, 2007
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Where I stayed
I also had to change hostel since I had only booked for the 6 nights and it was now fully booked for tonight but Beijing has no lack of hostels though so finding another did not take long even if my first choice was also fully booked out.
Having an extra day in Beijing with no real plans I thought of going to the Summer Palace which I'd not yet seen but from hearing other people's experiences with the crowds there this week it did not appeal too much and the light rain that had started sealed the decision to skip it in favour of the Ming City Wall Ruins instead since it was just a short distance from the hostel.
Not being much to see actually since the walls had been destroyed during the communists modernisation of Beijing and only a 2km stretch had been restored just 4 years ago after a call to return the the bricks that had been removed to build peoples homes in the 50s and 60s. From here I went to check the prices on a flight to Xi'an after I'd decided to simply skip Pingyao rather than have to hang around Beijing for an undetermined amount of time when there 'maybe' tickets.
I knew there was one of China's domestic airlines booking offices just outside the hostel so I headed there to find the guy behind the desk not being able to speak a single word of English. Luckily a delivery guy was dropping something off and he spoke only a few words of very broken English but it was at least enough to get across what I wanted to the most disinterested sales clerk I'd ever met.
By now the delivery guy had left and I managed to get my ticket to Xi'an leaving a little later than the first flight in the morning as I'd had enough of flights and train journeys leaving at the crack of dawn.