Posted in response to the Daily Post weekly photo challenge.  This week’s theme ‘Intricate

Well, I was spoilt for choice with this topic.  First of all I thought of some of the lovely patterns on the buildings in Morocco, then I thought about taking some pics of the beautiful tablecloth that my mother-in-law spent years embroidering for me, but then, I remembered China. The beautiful buildings there are all covered in gorgeous decoration one way or another, but I thought these roof details that we saw at the Temple of Heaven in Beijing just about take the biscuit as far as intricacy goes.  What do you think??

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Keeping warm in Pingyao

Ok, I apologise, this is not technically a great picture, but I think it captures this week’s photo challenge theme ‘warmth‘ well enough to share it.  It was taken on our trip to China whilst we were staying in the ancient city of Pingyao.  We were there for Chinese New Year, which was one of the most extraordinary experiences of my life – wonderfully chaotic!

It was bitterly cold, the coldest I have ever been, but the gorgeous old courtyards in our beautiful hotel each had their own charcoal brick fires (like the one pictured), and you can also see the doors to our rooms covered with blue duvets to keep the drafts out. The fire and the lanterns gave it all a magical glow.  It was still too bloomin’ cold to stand out there for long though!

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The Great Wall, China

You’ve seen photos, watched documentary’s about them, read the books, bought the tee-shirt, but some places just have to be experienced to feel their full impact. We travelled quite widely in China and saw some truly spectacular and wonderful sights that I will never forget, but the one that, completely and unexpectedly,  blew me out of the water was the Great Wall. You might say ‘one wall is much the same as another’ believe me, it’s not.

The majesty of it’s extraordinary steep sweep, like a brush stroke across the landscape, is breathtaking. Knowing it’s gruesome history makes it even more so.  We visited in February, during the New Year festival (an astonishing not-to-be-missed event), it was unbelievably cold, with a biting wind blowing across. It did mean it was a beautifully clear day though, so we could see for miles.

It is impossible to capture it fully in a photograph, but I was particularly pleased with this photograph of my friend Gill.  I loved the way her coat is billowing out and that she looks completely alone (she wasn’t of course),and I think the photo does, just about, conveys the sense of just how bloomin’ steep it was!

Great Wall, China