Friday, November 03, 2017

Tiananmen Square Revisited

This is my friend Jill and I after an early morning walk before breakfast, outside of our hotel in Beijing.

We are both early risers, and each morning around 4:30am would come a ping on my phone. “Are you up? Want to go walking?” 

YES! Was the immediate answer as I’d likely been up for an hour or more already.  We’d usually head out between 6:30am and 6:45am back in time to grab breakfast and make it to the bus on time for the day’s adventures.

Interesting things about big-city China – They wash the streets.  OFTEN!  And I’m not talking just a left-sweeper type action but with huge trucks and tons of hosing force.  The streets were always wet as if from a recent deluge of rain.

There were some clips from our walking adventures that I was able to post up to Facebook and Instagram, but unable to share on the blog due to blogging by email with connectivity issues.  I’m still rather happy that I was able to get through what I did get through!

After dinner on our fist night in Beijing, loaded with energy and upside-down body clocks, we set out to find an ATM and stretch our legs in our new surroundings:


Beijing at night!

The city is VERY SAFE.  In fact there are policement and guards on nearly every street corner.  And talk about clean, clean clean! There were no burger wrappers or empty water bottles or discarded trash anywhere.


A Catholic Cathedral down from our hotel!

This was an unexpected sight!  But so beautiful in the golden light. While the original foundation of the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception was in 1605, making it the oldest Catholic church in Beijing, the current building in Baroque style dates from 1904.  Really? Who knew! 


And there was dancing happening!

All over china, folks gather in the evening time to do their dancing as a form of exercise and social interaction.  It was so fun to watch!  I combined a few video clips.  Click to play:

Jill and I both wanted to jump in with the second group of line dancers. It looked really fun!

Ball room dancing in front of the cathedral!


Not raining, just street washed!

This was the closest “BIG STORE” near us, a WuMart complete with McDonalds.  We ventured in on one of our mornings to check out the experience.  PACKED with people shopping and oh so much fun!


Choosing landmarks.

Turn right past the red door with the cats!


Back to our hotel…even the dumpsters have very Chinese beautiful doors!


Our bus, with the Craftours sign!

We are ready for our big Tiananmen Square day!


How many times has this place been in the news during my growing up years?

It felt extremely surreal being in this place that I had only seen during the evening news growing up.  In 1989, during the student protests and massacre I had been married for 8 years. Youngest son Jason was 6 when I traveled to Japan with the community college performing group for a 10 year sister-city celebration that we were singing at. My first big trip away from home.  Tiananmen Square was all over the news by the time I returned home from Japan.  Funny how certain memories are attached to others and you can remember where you were, what you were doing at that time.

One thing I was unaware of on that Japan trip?  I kept thinking it must be the jet lag and the different food that had me feeling kind of off.  It was only upon returning home after nearly 2 weeks that I discovered I was expecting Jeff that whole time.  Yep.  Memories of places and events and things.


And I’m standing here with Mao.  In 2017.

I am breaking down my more than 600+ photos and video clips by day to fill in the gaps of what I wasn’t able to post by email.  I hope you enjoy them!

From here we went into the Forbidden City. I'll share that another time!

I am missing my group so much already.


Last night’s sewing attempt! LOL!

(But the points match oh, so nicely!)


All 120 blocks are now DONE!

It’s going to be a desk day for me – loads of edits starting to happen.  I hope by evening time I can lay these out and start in on webbing them together.

My quilts are on their way back to me from photography in California, and there are still 4 more book patterns to write after I get them back into my hot little hands.

I’m trying to do as much writing as I can before I have to go to family in Idaho.  Still no word on that.  My beloved Father in law is still holding on – like a barnacle (we laughed!  Every moment with him is precious) and we are just taking it one day at a time.

In the mean time, I’m making as much good use of this waiting time as I can.  That manuscript due date of January 2nd is looming.


Quiltville Quote of the Day!

And the truth is, we are all going to disappoint people at some point while being true to ourselves at the same time.. Be brave anyway!

I love the simplicity of this 16-patch quilt…there are still more shirt fabrics hanging around…hmmmm!

Have a great Friday, everyone.


  1. WOW.... SOMEHOW I didn't get the message until this morning... two whole days i could have been haunting the various Lowe's stores!! and was waiting SO patiently... my internet carrier will hear from me!!!! LOL and I'm so excited, actually yesterday i finally chose and attached the binding for En Provence! So, now dear Bonnie, maybe that father in law just needs to see you one more time!?? Maybe give him a call and tell him (again) what he means to you... my heart and prayers are with you and the family... again, thanks for all you do for us and your huge contribution to just my life, it boggles to imagine the beneficial presence you present... Love and blessings to you and family. Cats

  2. Keeping you in my thoughts, as you go through this tough time with family. Thank you for sharing your generosity and time with us. Wishing you the warmth and comfort of your family as you take another journey in life. Hugs.

  3. Interesting that the mobile home was set up next to the Square--what a clash of old and new! Living vicariously has been wonderful. Today's comment is perfect--best wishes from TN <3

  4. I made a block just like your example! Different colors, same orientation!! I did rip mine back to where I could fix it. I
    appreciate, more than words can say, all of your communications, thoughts and contributions to my daily life. You are like a best friend that goes everywhere with me (like Ireland) but with whom I rarely disagree. What a blessing. Thanks from the bottom of my heart!!

  5. I would like to add my thanks to you Bonnie, for your time. Computer time, takes a lot from your day. Your quilting community is so nice to listen to. Kerryn Australia

  6. I recently attended a quilting "retreat" (took sewing machines, supplies, etc. to a local retreat center, left them for 3 days but returned home for dinner and sleep). Two quilts were were offered as patterns and instructions. One was your Pineapple Blossom. The instructions that were given out were a direct copy of what you have on the blog. I am asking if the instructor had asked permission to teach that quilt. No where did she mention that it was originally yours.

    I had signed up for it and the weekend before the retreat (as I was cutting the strips necessary), I googled the name Pineapple Blossom as it sounded familiar. I was surprised to find that (1) it was yours and (2) that I already had all the instructions saved on my computer.

    The instructors name is Colette Kocinski. Since you have a copyright notice (©2005-2017 All contents of this blog are the property of Bonnie K. Hunter, and cannot be reproduced in any way without prior written consent.) on your blog and offer free patterns. I presume that the "free" is for personal use and not for giving to "paid" customers. If she did not ask for permission, I would like to know that. As a sometime teacher, I am very careful to NOT use someone else's material whether designs or instructions.

  7. Thanks so much for sharing, Bonnie. I know I will never travel to China but thanks to you I feel like I made a trip.


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