News from Shandong! [Previous]

[ 10/3/2008 12:21:06 PM | Author:Amanda | From:Original | Weather:Sunny ] Font£ºLarge Middle Small

Hello everyone!

 

I¡¯m glad to see such a positive response to our website. I want to apologize for not updating the site sooner. We¡¯ve had some slow internet connections at the hotels that have held us back a bit.

 

I¡¯m glad to inform you, everyone¡¯s safe! We¡¯ve be doing tons of riding and site seeing.

 

Jinan city, the capital of Shandong, gave us a wonderful kick off to our Harley ride. We arrived at the Shandong Culture Industry Fair to find a huge crowd of people and large banner welcoming us. Jinan was only the start Shandong welcoming Harley into their province.

 

We headed to Qufu to be in the hometown of Confucius on his birthday¡ªhence the name of the Tour! Again, we were welcomed by the local residents with open arms. There was an Official Welcome Ceremony held for Harley-Davidson with music, dancers, and local government officials who gave us a welcoming speech and then opened the city gates for the riders to march through in a procession. Our riders were treated like celebrities ¨C and everyone wanted a picture with the guys and their bikes!

 

Our next stop was in Tai an where we rode a cable car to the top of the mountain. What an incredible view! There was a small town of people who actually reside on top of the mountain year round. We learned that the cable car was built only two years ago, and before that, these people would carry their supplies up and down the mountain. A climb that takes about 8 hours!

 

From Tai an we rode to Weifang. This proved to be the greatest leg of the ride. It was dark by the time we made it and we learned that Chinese riders aren¡¯t big on using headlights. The scenery was beautiful. Shandong is largely an agricultural province. Unfortunately, sharing the roads with all the local farmers caused a bit of dust and dirt to cover our men. We all arrived safely, and I have to say, I was more than impressed with the riding skills of these men.

 

Moving along, we headed to see the Nan shan district. This area was once deserted, but a small group of farmers turned it into an industrial and commercial area. It was incredible to see the entire town¡¯s miniature model. There was a large copper Buddha at the top of the mountain that overlooked the city. What a spectacular site that was. We also were given a tour of  a retirement home where the elderly citizen¡¯s of Nan shan live. Some of our guys looked pretty happy sitting in those rocking chairs.

 

After visiting the big Buddha we headed back to the hotel for a relaxing dinner. Over dinner we had a chance to learn a little more about Chinese culture: The Chinese love to drink! The first day of the trip we were taught the term ¡°Gan bei¡± or ¡°Cheers¡±. In this culture cheers in synonymous with ¡°Bottoms up¡± or -- finish your entire drink! We had a bit of a challenge between our police escort and the Harley riders. Jim was appointed our honorary drinking representative and he certainly held his own. The word this morning was ¨C our Harley guys won!

 

We also learned we have support from about 500 police throughout Shandong. They¡¯ve waited patiently at many check points along the trip to help ensure our safety, even when we¡¯re two hours behind schedule. To have a police force offer this much support, is a great honor in China. We¡¯re very grateful. You¡¯re guys really are celebrities over here (and becoming a part of history!).

 

Take some time to look around the website, you¡¯ll see Michelle posted some news articles that were featured in Chinese newspapers. We¡¯ve seen a really positive response over here to the ¡°Ride to Confucius¡± program.  They¡¯ll all have tons of stories to share with you when they return home. In the mean time, keep checking back. We¡¯re trying to get you more pictures and news daily.

 

Thanks for your support,


Amanda

Knighthawk Tours

 

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  • Name:Amanda
  • Sex:female
  • Regeistered Date:9/29/2008
  • Email:azellner@ucomusa.com
  • City:Philadelphia

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