As you know, I have traveled in China many times. Most of the time I have been in large cities. This Shu-dao trip also started in the big city of Chengdu, in the province where I was born during the Sino-Japanese War - a long time ago! The trip terminated in another big city, Xi'an, where the Teracotta soldiers were discovered in 1974. These life-like statues, guarding the tomb of Qin Shi Huang, amazed the world and clearly demonstrated that this first emporer and builder of the Great Wall accomplished a great many things during his lifetime! The construction of the Shu-road was also begun by him, two thousand years ago, and he used it to unite China for the first time. This road has been modified and used since that time and continues to be used today. I am only partially describing this road, showing you fragmented parts using pictures which I took during a three week trip through small towns and several wilderness areas, where remains of the road are still clearly visible. I want to give you a feel for this fascinating piece of history, which linked people in ancient China as well as those in our modern civilization! There is no way I can demonstrate to you my emotion and the appreciation of history, which I experienced during this trip. But I will show you some pictures which I took during those few short days of traveling this spring!!!
The sequence of our experiences is not important here. So this report is really to demonstrate what impressed me the most about this trip. It will serve to remind me that China is much more than Panda bears in Chengdu and Terracotta statues in Xi'an. We had a small group of people, a total of 12 travelers, lead by a lady (Hope) from Philadelphia, who has written a book about the Shu-Road. She has devoted a tremendous amount of time and effort in finding out everything possible about it. First I will show you some group pictures of these travelers, who shared a lot during these twenty days and amazingly got along well together, despite being in a bus day in and day out!
in a hotel lobby
after a specutacular hike! - taken next to the tree planted for Hope (more later)
at a musesm!
Every other time when my family and I visited China, we traveled duing the warm summer months. This trip took place in March and the temperature was in the fifties. We had only a very few rainy days. The early spring was glorious! The bright yellow rape flowers could be seen everywhere you went!
You can see below where the highway was realigned to preserve some Cypress trees!
the first trail-head my sister and I started together
this is a typical stone path!
an old bridge
the blue sign on the cypress tree indicates that it is "officially" registered.
my first big cypress tree!
the wall was constructed around the tree
the first farmer we met
an official sign for the area with cypress trees
Our first big, big tree!
more, and more spectacular trees!
The pictures above show you the relative size of these trees!
An additional guide was with us on these trails, Miss Lee at the Zhang-fei well!
trees were protected along the highway!
Hope Justman's two-year-old Cypress tree!
Of course, the trees, some of which were planted at the time the Shu-road was constructed, are among the most important indications of the path which it followed.
There are also some old towns we could see along the way. Below are some pictures of typical old towns.
This one was surrounded by rivers on three sides.
Our beloved leader of this tour explained the old town!
backstage at a puppet show!
We were watching!
Food is being dried!
food for sale!
selling baked sweet potatos and corn
A very funny sign! Why are they pictured together?
Zhang-fei temple and tomb!
By accident, we donated to the organization for deaf and dumb people who were performing that day!
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