Home > Learning English > Bilingual News
My Great Adventure with Murphy's Law (I)

By Catherine E. Wood
China.org.cn staff reporter

The Wall beckons trekers to 'Never Stop Exploring.'
The Wall beckons trekers to "Never Stop Exploring."

Ever since I can remember, I have dreamed of traveling to China. I have always had visions of scaling the Great Wall, hiking Yellow Mountain, and seeing the Warriors at Xi'an, and finally, at 21 years old, my wildest dreams were coming true. I have been living in Beijing for three months now and one by one, I have been crossing off item after item on my "to-do while in China" list, sadly though, my time is almost up and I only have two more weeks in this wonderful country.


Still there was one item in particular on my list that I was NOT willing to go home without completing: hiking the Great Wall.


And I don't mean any section of the Great Wall, I had my heart set on a remote, pristine, and crumbling section of the Great Wall, I wanted to be able to enjoy the full aesthetics that Simatai has to offer. So Saturday morning, under a beautifully blue Beijing sky, my friend William and I set out, determined to conquer the Wall and my number one "To-Do" in China. We left our apartment by 9:00 am, fully confident that by lunchtime we would be enjoying the view from the top, the only problem is, Murphy's Law decided to follow us every step of the way…


You see, Murphy's Law dictates that "if anything can possibly go wrong, it will," and as long as I can remember, this has been following me around.


We had our trusty traveler's gospel with us, "The Lonely Planet" guidebook to show us the way. This book has been with us everywhere in China and really been a lifesaver, unfortunately and unbeknownst to us, today was Murphy's Law day and everything was destined to be incorrect. But, with full faith in our guide we headed into Dongzhimen Long Distance Bus Station, and through broken Chinese, found our way to bus 980.


Initially the day was going very smooth; we hardly even had to wait for a bus. William and I marveled at the clockwork like efficiency of the bus station in action, two busses would pull up at the same time to accommodate the hoards of people and then within 5 minutes, two more would show up. We took our seats near the back left side of the bus, careful to choose the best seats possible for our journey, and after paying the 15 RMB ticket price, we took off! Out to explore the wild adventure of Simatai! Only, after about three minutes into our journey, the bus was burning up and the downfall to our seats was discovered: no curtain. Out of the entire bus of seats, we had picked the one row of seats that the curtain had been ripped off; just my luck. Of course I justified this with that outside, hiking on The Great Wall, there would be no air conditioning and I was just acclimating myself to the temperature. Although I was sweating on the bus, I decided to make the best of things, throw on my beloved sunglasses, pop in my iPod, and enjoy the countryside.


1   2    

Pet Name
- 20 years of building Hope, one shot at a time (I)
- Armed with a camera, the blind capture their world
- Walking down a dream (II)
- Walking down a dream (I)
- Blue Frog makes me taste red, white and blue
Chinglish Corner