Pingliang, China
Date: Lodging: Distance: Total:
15/04/1999 Pingliang Hotel 356 KM 17778 KM

Jim with a Taoist follower

Monks participating in the rain ceremony

After climbing the many stairs, Jim and I found the monks performing a rain ceremony, complete with chanting and the burning of yellow tissue paper and incense.

A recent refurbishment makes for vivid colors.

Monks abound in China.

Ornamentation inside a Taoist monastery

One of several ornate structures at the Taoist monastery


The art of Chinese writing

Keeping the monastery safe

Enough tourists visit the monastery to warrant vendors selling souvenirs at the entrance.

We climbed what seemed like 1000 steps to reach the top of the mountain, where the monastery's main functions take place. No roads lead to the top so all food and necessities come up the stairs or on a makeshift rope system.

15 April 1999 - We found a two-star hotel with huge rooms, thin cotton towels and hot water available from 8 p.m. until midnight and then 7 a.m. to 8 a.m.. Plus, breakfast is included in the US$30 room rate. Life gets no better. After checking in, we immediately walked the streets noticing hundreds of people in the park. A loud speaker played music while townspeople waltzed. Unfortunately, we arrived at the last dance. Once the music stopped, more than 100 Chinese circled Jim and me. An old man spoke while pointing at my eyes and someone translated, “He wants your round, blue eyes!” Jim and I laughed. Our interpreter Mr. Yuan explained, “These Americans are traveling around the world and they love China.” The cheerful crowd continued to enlarge, and we stood like statues as people simply stared at us. A little boy poked at Jim in amazement and women stroked my hair. Finally, we began our walk home, with a mob following every step.


  Pingliang Hotel (Jim)
  Dancing in Pingliang (Paige)
  Pingliang (Paige)
  Taoist temples (Paige)
  Taoist temples (Jim)
  Liu Peng Mountains (Jim)
  More Pingliang (Paige)
  On the way to Pingliang (Jim)