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PADDY'S CHINA TRIP
YANGTZE - Cruise Day 1

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April 27, 2011.  We embarked on April 26, in the evening after all our other activities.

                      

When we got to where our boat was anchored, we found out that because the river was extremely low, the boat had to anchor in the middle of the channel, very far away from the river's edge, and at an extremely low level. As a result, we had to go down very long & steep stairways, and then walk for blocks on narrow planks over the muddy terrain.  Thank goodness our luggage had been transported by the crew. Pat stands in front of the Victoria Ana. When we finally boarded, we were welcomed by the ship's band.

 

            

Our stateroom was rather comfortable, with a balcony, and we even had a tub in the bathroom.

 

                   

              

As the evening progressed we were treated to views of the shore and the river traffic, and did a little onboard exploration.

 

               

After sailing all night we approached the Ghost City, located on the Ming Mountain. This site is a mixture of Confucianism, Taoism, and Buddhism beliefs, and it has a history of nearly 2,000 years. We were told that to have good luck, we should cross the entrance bridge in no more than 5 steps. My long legs came in handy.

 

              

One of the first things we saw was a mural of a Buddha that was undergoing repairs, and next to it another image already restored.  The Chinese character means "Only kindness brings peace", certainly a mouthful and very complicated to write. Then we saw our first "ghost" image. In hell, all ghosts are scary. They are the souls or spirits of the dead.

 

            

There are sculptures of ghosts everywhere, and Paddy stands first next to a frightening one, and then next to a peaceful female ghost. It was very hot & humid throughout the day.

 

                   

                  

The previous photographs are all representations of hell after death; then we said good bye to the Ghost City, returned to the Victoria Ana, and were treated to a beautiful sun set.

 

                        

                               

 Once on board, we changed into dressy clothes for the evening performance. The crew of the Victoria Ana was extraordinarily talented.  Not only did they look good, they were very graceful dancers, musicians, and singers. They put on marvelous shows night after night. And they were very attentive and helpful during the day as well.

On the next day we would navigate the Yang Tze river through out the area of  The Three Gorges.

 

 

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