Well Ally and I have been planning for awhile that today (saturday) we would go to the Foridden City. We have been looking forward to it because that is one of the main things people talk about seeing in China. Let me just tell you about our day.
We decided to sleep in till about 8 and start our day off a little later than normal. We were excited because we could pick up the bus right outside our apartment complex so we didn't have to walk anywhere. We got on the bus and it was extremely crowded. Now we have been on some crowded buses but not like this. This was okay and so we just stood on the bus for about an hour. As soon as we stepped off the bus we started walking in what we thought was the general direction to the Forbidden City. All of a sudden this girl, Lin, started talking to us. She was a student at the University and for awhile we just thought she must be practicing her English on us (which people do alot). So we let her walk with us and she asked us where we were going. We told her the Forbidden City and asked her to point us in the direction. She informed us she was going there too so she would walk with us. Then she tells us that this is the Art Festival right now and she was a painter so would we mind looking at her work. We said okay because we thought well it is on the way that is fine. 20 minutes later we go up to her studio and she trys to sell us paintings at a ridiculously high price. Well we are somewhat offended because we are thinking we bought some of these already for like 1/10 of that price, no way are we paying that. So 30 minutes and 2 paintings later we finally are able to escape and she points us in the right direction. So we walk for about 30 minutes and realize we have no idea where we are. It has now been 2 hours since we got off the bus and we are hungry for lunch. We decide to go back to where we started because we saw a mcdonalds there.
So we eat lunch and then call our friends who have already gone and they tell us which way to go. We start off and not even 15 minutes after we started walking another girl comes up to us and starts talking. Now don't ask how we fell into the same trap because we have no idea either. She walks with us and is just talking away telling us about the history of China and showing us some really neat things along the way. She walked us through the garden and then all of a sudden we were on this side street. So I ask her "Are you sure this is the way to the Forbidden City?" And she is like "Oh yes just down this street" Then all of a sudden we are at her store and she is a painter too!!!! We were angry now and got out of there quickly. So finally 3 1/2 hours after exiting the bus we finally made it to the Forbidden City. By now we had been in two shops, gotten lost twice, and eaten lunch. Our feet were killing us and we were dripping in sweat. Not fun so far. So we see this big Chinese looking building and assume we are in the right place. We don't know because there were absolutely no signs that said Forbidden City or Tianemen Square. So we see a place to buy tickets and just decide to buy it and assume what we are doing is right. By now we are in bad moods and tired and hot. So we get in the Palace Museum and rush through everything because now we don't even care we just want to go some place cool and sit down. So Forbidden City turned out to be a bust. Then we went and rested for ahwile before getting back on the bus. So we are on the bus and it is even more crowded than before which we had not thought was possible. Now here comes the worst part for me. So we are standing there for another hour and we are all in annoyed moods but trying to make the best of it by joking about our day. We get off the bus and I check my bag because we stopped at a restuarant and my camera is GONE! It got stolen on the bus! I mean there is no way it just fell out of my bag so that is the only logical explanation and I would not have felt it because everyone is touching you on there! So now we sit down and I'm about to cry because all my pictures are lost and my camera and I just bought a new memory card and everything for the trip so I could fit all my pictures on there.
So to sum up the day, it wasn't our best day here.