Tuesday, January 26, 2010

China July 2009 - Drum&Bell Tower, Hutong

In classic tourist mode, we met Molly & Anne in front of the Bell & Drum Tower, to go for a pedal-taxi tour of a hutong - original-style neighborhood. Much has been altered to cater to tourists - but a lot of flavor remains. Many of the doorways are intricately decorated. The thresholds are to prevent bad spirits from entering, a secondary spirit blockade is a divider wall just inside the door - according to legend (and Molly, our translator), evil spirits can't surmount steps or go around corners. Gardening opportunities are carved out of seemingly unuseable space everywhere....

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