Mixing It Up With Locals and Clay Soldiers
As iconic and exotic as Egypt, every child in America learns a little about Chinese history; it was one of those places that I just could not wait to get to. The Great Wall, the Forbidden City, and the Xian Warriors are probably the top three sights to see, and we were going to do just that on our first trip to the China.
We headed to Xian after four days in Beijing with its throngs of people, bikes, polluted skies, hutongs, and sight after sight to overwhelm the first-timer. We were more than ready to go somewhere a little less chaotic, a little less crowded.
After a surprise night spent in Shanghai, we landed in this dusty, small city. The taxi driver had no idea where to go, how to speak English, and we had to drive from big hotel to big hotel until we could figure out where we were supposed to go. To be honest, we were thinking “What the hell have we got ourselves into?” This wasn’t a very smooth start, but we finally found our small hotel and from that point on Xian just got better and better and better.
We booked a driver to take us to the Mausoleum of the Qin dynasty and the Terra Cotta Warriors. We didn’t realize that it was quite a ways from the city of Xian, but we love getting out into the countryside, so we were happy about that. As a bonus our driver took us to visit his aunt who lived in a cave-house built into the mountain. His parents were both scientists and they had all been displaced to this area during the Mao period to work the fields. His aunt had stayed. She was very welcoming and we enjoyed a cup of tea with her and her neighbors.