Give us a rice-less meal with some flavour and protein and we are happy! Tonight we had a dumpling feast and it was the first meal we've had since we came that we cleaned up all the food on the table. We had at least a dozen different kinds of dumplings artfully pinched to represent what's inside - pork, duck, fish. Following the dumplings we watched a Tang Dynasty Show. It was entertaining but nothing like our show last night.
This morning our tour guide, George, got us checked in at the Hangzhou airport and posed for a green bus group photo before leaving for home. We'll have a different guide in Xian. Our flight was delayed because of air traffic so we arrived in Xian, the cultural capital of China, at about 2.30 pm. We decided to skip lunch so that we could visit the Big Wild Goose Pagoda and the Grand Mosque. The pagoda is about 1400 years old but you are not allowed to climb it. It was interesting to see the monks and people burning incense to make a wish to Buddha. The park area around the pagoda is beautiful. I got my photo with my zodiac sign, the dog. James will posts the photo on his blog.
There are about 100,000 Muslims in Xian. The mosque (this is a male mosque - the female one is down the street) is very old and does not look like a traditional mosque. The most fascinating part was the walk to the mosque through a street that seemed to be dedicated to food on a stick and a very crowded market area - known for pick pockets. Walking through was a real experience for the senses!
Aunty Pat requested that I mention in the blog today that Aunty Deb (absent mindedly) left her purse (with passport) at breakfast this morning. Total panic when she realized it was missing. When they finally found the purse all the zippers were opened. Luckily it seems like nothing is missing. Whew! We like Aunty Deb and would hate to leave her in Hangzhou. No police involved.