China – Forbidden City

Today was fun. It was snowing throughout the day and the -8 C was an interesting experience. I added another layer of clothing and that seemed to do the trick and for the most parts I was comfortable with
the cold and the snow.

I have never seen snow before today (yesterday I had seen fallen snow, today was snow fall all around) and I was like an exited 5 year old jumping around in the snow (leading to the locals thinking that I am
cookoo).

Anyway, I got out relatively early and walked to the Forbidden City (I am staying quite close). The geography is like this on one side of the road is the forbidden city and on the other side is the infamous
Tiananmen Square (which is named after the Tiananmen Gate of the Forbidden City complex. Incidentally Tiananmen means the “gate of heavenly peace”. Ironic.).

Now on the footpaths for a kilometer on either side of the gate, the path is paved with granite (which I am assuming looks good in summer/ spring). In winter with snow this is slippery as hell.

I was hoping to come back around 2-2:30 pm but ended up staying there till 5pm (and was then locked in behind Tiananmen Gate while the flag was lowered outside). Finally got out at 5:30 and caught some dinner
and picked up some groceries etc.

Some of the snaps are on flickr: http://www.flickr.com/photos/nmkrishna/

I was not able to get any beautiful vistas or shots that will give you a scene of scale of this gigantic complex. The snow in most of the shots makes it hard to get a sense of the grandeur of this place. I should also come again sometime in spring or autumn to also see this complex in all its colours.

What I loved was the smaller size of the buildings in the inner courtyard with a much more intimate feel (this was the residence of the Emperor, Empresses etc) and lots of nooks and crannies.

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