I figured it a strange co-incidence … You see October 1st is Communist China’s birthday and she is 66 years old, born in 1949. And October 2nd is my birthday. I am 49 years old, born in 1966. A nice play on the numbers 49 + 66 as I celebrated my birthday on Mount Yi with Wei, amazed by a giant God of Longevity carved onto the Meng Shan mountains.

god of longevity carved face meng shan mountains shandong china

A mighty sight that I wasn’t prepared for. It’s so big ! I had a Linyi tourism brochure but knew no info about the size of the sculpture nor that it was the God of Longevity until we arrived this day.

carved face mountainside meng shan china

A God of Longevity carved into a mountainside. This isn’t an ancient but rather a modern wonder; it was finished in 2002. The whole sculpture measures 218 meters in height and 198 meters in width. It is the LARGEST mountain carving on the planet.

couple enjoying meng shan mountains china

Young couple enjoying Mount Yi on a pleasant, carefree Autumn day during the National Day holiday period in China (known as Golden Week)

face meng shan mountains china panorama

A panoramic walk (or cable car ride) along cliff edge drops towards the God of Longevity on Mount Yi amid the Meng Shan mountains of Shandong province in north-east China.

steep temple steps china

Climbing the steps of the temple on Guimeng Peak, the highest point within the Yi – Meng Shan region.

temple meng shan mountains china

Regarded as a sacred mountain and sacrificial place of the emperors in ancient times, the importance of this peak ranks second in Shandong. As Tai Shan ( 120 km away ) is foremost, being the holiest of ALL mountains in China.

chinese babe with chinese flags in hair

Wei displays Chinese flags clipped into in her hair; a souvenir stall vendor at the foot of the mountain had rushed over to me and asked where I was from (New Zealand) . And she welcomed us to China. She offered these tiny flags as a gift. Many people carried flags on their mountain hike this day. National Day holiday patriotism aside, Wei said it was a way for people to gain encouragement on their long, steep journey up Mount Yi … Go babe !

MRP + Wei China birthday

Murmurings from an ancient god … Wei & MRP  – AKA: THE CANDY TRAIL – entering my 49th year of existence.

the lovely landscape deserves our good behavior

Indeed …

How to live longer: This is a quest that goes back to the beginning of recorded time. I suppose how long we live is up to DNA and luck, and our choices in life.

And with constant advances in science and medicine, living another 49 years could be on the cards. But with beer/s in hand and indulging a regular diet of alcohol, I wouldn’t bet on my luck.

Travels in China – 2015

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