All exaggerations were true

Before I left for Beijing I saw a lot of reports about the terrible air quality at the Olympics. They weren't exaggerating. This is a photo taken of the now famous Bird's Nest Stadium. That's not fog in the distance. You can maybe see a half a mile or so. [caption id="attachment_126" align="alignnone" width="300" caption="Smog - Bird's Nest Stadium"]Bird's Nest Stadium[/caption]

A rain storm did come through and cleared out the smog and heat. Unfortunately, I was caught in that rain storm at the Great Wall. Lightning hit one the the guard towers on the wall where 9 people were taking shelter. No one was hurt seriously, but a few had to be taken down in stretcher. Seeing the shock on the face of a wife whose husband was injured more than convinced me it was not worth going up the mountain.

[caption id="attachment_124" align="alignnone" width="300" caption="Thunderstorm - Town below Great Wall"]Thunderstorm - Town below Great Wall[/caption]

Other than the air quality and humidity, the trip was fantastic. Amazing city and gracious people. They did a great job of organizing such a mind-blogging huge event.

[caption id="attachment_125" align="alignnone" width="300" caption="Clear Skies - Temple of Heaven"]Temple of Heaven - Clear Skies[/caption]