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Mike and Lee's Messages

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From Zee and Bob - Thursday, 24th July 2008, 21:02 (GMT)
What a different world and what an adventure you are having. Thanks for taking us with you!! Great pictures!!!
hanks for going with us--we're sweating off a few pounds, but it's worth it.
From Michael - Thursday, 24th July 2008, 22:39 (GMT)
Have fun at the Great Wall of that feels cool writing that!
We're excited about being on the Wall--more later
From Pat - Friday, 25th July 2008, 10:21 (GMT)
Thank you for sharing this wonderful trip with us! The pictures are great, as is the "blah blah". Somehow I didn't know to expect the very bright colors used so freely; somewhere got the idea that it was probably majestic but dull and drab. I am so glad to know that you are enjoying your food, as that could have been problematic. How is the air there - have they managed to clean it up for the Olympics? No problems there, I hope. Glad that Ramona's clothes arrived; that's got to be a relief for her. Say hello to Ramona and Bill and Linda and Bob. Can hardly wait for the Great Wall and Ming Tombs... Love you guys, Pat
The air is less than desirable, but so far it's caused no obvious problems. I'm sure they're hoping it's better for the Olympics.
From Heather - Friday, 25th July 2008, 16:03 (GMT)
Happy Friday to you in China! Wait, I guess Friday is almost over for you is almost Saturday in China now. Crazy! Happy traveling! Love, Heather
Thanks, Heather.
Love from both of us.

From Terry - Friday, 25th July 2008, 21:17 (GMT)
What terrific photos and commentary!!! Have you eaten any snake or unusual delicacies? What side of the road do the Chinese drive? You all look like you are having a great time. Terry
No snake thus far, though we've heard about all-snake restaurants--spare me! They drive on same side as we do, aggressively!
From Zee and Bob - Friday, 25th July 2008, 22:07 (GMT)
This is amazing, and I am so enjoying tagging along on your trip! Thank You!!! Great pictures and journaling. I am curious -- when was the Great Wall built, and why? Guess I can research online. It is an amazing structure. My reaction to everything is: WOW.
It was built over hundreds of years--do look at the National Geographic photos on their site as you research--beautiful!
From Pat - Saturday, 26th July 2008, 12:04 (GMT)
Wonderful pictures (thanks, Mike and Robert) and blah. Poor Lee - no tickee, no supper! Perhaps you should ask the guide for a phonetic note should that happen again. Formidable steps everywhere; no wonder you were pooped! Hope the feet and hands are behaving! Love you guys!
Daily reminders that people's history makes them unique combined with the constant reminder that human nature seems the same the world over. By the way, the hotel folks who couldn't help me were truly chagrined by our communication gap, as was I.
From Carol Ann Landry - Saturday, 26th July 2008, 15:01 (GMT)
Hi, Lee and Mike.

Pat's shared your travel page with me. I'm fascinated. You're the fourth and fifth people I know who've "done" China, and I'm totally jealous, but in a good way.

I'm enjoying ALL the photos, but I just love the one of the reluctant beauty giving the peace sign. Or, was it really one of those "hip hop" signs the younger generation uses these days? So cute!

I've printed out your journal to read at my leisure. I want to dwell on it, and enjoy every bit of your experience.

Bye for now,

Carol Ann
Thanks for traveling with us, Carol Ann. These are wonderful people with really cute kids, made even more precious to parents by the country's one-child policy.
From Dale - Tuesday, 29th July 2008, 21:58 (GMT)
Thinking of all six of daily and living vicariously...also Ken and Martha. Hi to all from me please. And tomorrow please tell Mr. Blackburn that I think it's a little tacky for him to go all the way to China to keep from hearing me sing "Happy Birthday" to him and that I'm singing it anyway. Love. Dale
Hi, Dale.
Your greetings and good wishes will be delivered at lunch, just a few minutes from now. Happy to hear from you and hope all is well.
We'll sing to Bill of your behalf.
Mike and Lee
From Sally - Sunday, 27th July 2008, 04:44 (GMT)
Wow! What wonderful sites you are seeing, but perhaps I'm most amazed by the vigor with which you seem to have writing these fantastic daily posts. How do you have the energy?!? It is wonderful to be able to read new chapters every day and see the pictures. Thanks for letting friends live vicariously through this site.
Continued safe travels,
Thanks, Sally. Maybe it's in the Chinese food!
From Pat - Sunday, 27th July 2008, 11:48 (GMT)
Another magnificant group of pictures (oops, it's very early in the a.m. here). This just gets better and better! I do hope you're all having as much fun as it appears. Seems a congenial bunch with most of you full of energy, ay? Your many activities nearly tire me out and I'm not doing the walking! How will the shoppers get all those goodies back home? Much love to R & B, L & R, and to you.
We are driven by a desire to see everything we can and cold showers!
From Helen Dalton - Sunday, 27th July 2008, 14:54 (GMT)
Hi Mike and Lee
Pat shared your diary and pics with me. I know you are having a great time. I was there in 1996 and things have changed. For one thing the Hutongs have changed. We were fortunate enough to have access to people very familiar with the city. They took us to dinner at the "Peking Duck" restaurant deep in the Hutongs. Dirt streets, no indoor plumbing; water was from stand pipes along the street and the "honey wagon" came by every morning to empty the 55 gallon drums set up along the "streets". The streets were really paths, a car could not get through. I'm sure the people are happy about the improvements.

I hope to be checking your blog and following along on your trip.

When you get to Shanghai, be sure you shop the big state owned department store. I saw a tea set there and have wished at least 100 times that I had bought it.


Thanks for going with us, Helen. China is certainly about change!
From Donna Mayer Todd - Thursday, 31st July 2008, 04:02 (GMT)
Too marvelous! I've just caught up with your journey, staying up too late past bedtime to read it all. And Mike's photos are a terrific combination of real people and historic monuments -- and Olympic prep, of course. How you chose these few to share each day from the many you took is beyond me! I've stopped just before "pearls and swine" to savor what I've read and seen, and anticipate what I'll see next. As others before me have said, I feel as though I've experienced some of it with you. Thank you for sharing your adventure with us. So glad it has gone so well.

Trust us when we say it's our pleasure, Donna, and thanks for joining us.
From Heather - Thursday, 31st July 2008, 14:32 (GMT)
I really have loved this Planet Ranger site. It is so neat to "travel with you" through this great adventure that you are on. I expect a full slideshow and story time when you get back! A BIG hug from Annie and I : )
Love, Heather (and Annie...sleeping under my desk at work now)
Thanks, Heather. We miss you, Michael, and our sweet Annie.
From Joye - Friday, 1st August 2008, 01:53 (GMT)
good looking photos! I can't wait to frame ALL of them. Looks like a great trip. See you soon,
Thanks, Joye. Will our credit cover all that?
Best to Lib.
Mike and Lee
From Terry Coman - Friday, 1st August 2008, 04:47 (GMT)
I've been following your adventures each night and I'm facinated with your photos and journal. What a team!! Will you publish this when you get back? It's just wonderful!
Can't wait to see ALL your photos when you get back!
Glad you're enjoying our trip - we are, too.
See you soon.
Mike and Lee
From anna/dexter! - Friday, 1st August 2008, 14:38 (GMT)
Hi guys! We are getting ready to leave this morning for the beach. We watered your plants a lot so thay would not die.We will tell you all about it when we get back! See you soon Love,Anna/Dexterthemonkey!!
Thanks, Anna (and Dexter!). Have fun at the beach.
Mr. Mike and Ms. Lee
From Dave - Friday, 1st August 2008, 18:39 (GMT)
The pictures are fantastic. You guys look like you're having such fun.
I especially like the architecture and their use of vivid colors on the buildings.
We ran a news piece the other day about the Beijing pollution, hopefully Mike isn't being affected too badly.

Travel safe back home!
Next time we're at the lake, we'll look for the pontoon boat with the dragon on it!

Dave & Sally
Both old and new architecture astound us daily. Pollution is visible, but so far no problem for Mike's breathing. Guilin's air is much clearer, too. Thanks for traveling with us!
Lee and Mike
From Michael - Friday, 1st August 2008, 19:42 (GMT)
The Terra Cotta Warrior pictures are amazing! I am so glad you all are getting to see all of this history so well preserved! It makes me want to start digging to China!
You're very funny, Michael. We wish you and Heather were here with us. Come on down!
Mom and Dad
From Anne Bessent - Saturday, 2nd August 2008, 13:31 (GMT)
Thank you so much for the opportunity of visiting China - in the a/c of my own home.
Be safe in returning to yours.
Thanks, Anne. See you soon.
Lee and Mike
From christy and brian - Saturday, 2nd August 2008, 13:40 (GMT)
Well i am so glad you guys are having a great trip. Question could you see the Solar Eclipse ? It was in Russia , china . Not sure how far u are from that location . But their is some neat pic online. Pls. tell the folks that we said hello and love to all. Also tell Rob that the price for is package will cost 58.50 for 1 to 3 days delivery. (burger and fries) . HAAAHH
We heard that they saw the solar eclipse in Xi'an AFTER we left. We'll tell Rob the cost of a taste of home! Much love to you,
Lee and Mike
From grandma - Saturday, 2nd August 2008, 14:33 (GMT)
I can't wait each day to read of your adventures. You always could write so well. The pictures tell a story too. Enjoy.
We're glad you like it. It's been difficult to post here in Yangshuo, so more pictures will come from Shanghai much later tonight (Sunday)
Lee and Mike
From Mama - Sunday, 3rd August 2008, 04:01 (GMT)
Well, you are nearing the end of your journey. What an experience. Thank you for sharing with us who are waiting at home. Take care. god bless. love you Mama
We love you, too, Mom.
We'll be sure to share your message with Ramona and Bill and Linda and Robert.
From Pat Smith - Sunday, 3rd August 2008, 05:31 (GMT)
It just gets better and better! Maybe it's actually the accumulation of sights and experiences (vicarious in my case), which begin to seem almost overwhelming. Thank you so much for taking the time to post so that all of us can get a "taste" of it (wish we really could - of the dumpling feast)! And Shanghai yet to come...the mind boggles. Love to all.
Love back to you from Shanghai... see you soon.
Lee and Mike
From Mom - Monday, 4th August 2008, 02:12 (GMT)
All too soon it wil be time to head for home. It will take you many hours to organize your memories but you have cerrtainly experienced an unforgettable trip.
I talked to Clara Goble this evening and she had fallen on her face. Evidenty she did quite a bit if damage to her face.
Michael called this evening and he is excited about his promotion. I am happy for him. Love you Mom
Sorry to hear about Clara. Home again soon.
Mike and Lee