Unleashing my spirit animal on the Great Wall of China

China's Great Wall providing a fine opportunity for releasing one's inner mountain goat.

China’s Great Wall provides a fine opportunity for releasing one’s inner mountain goat.

The most taxing part of out visit to a section of the Great Wall outside of Beijing was resisting the vendors selling temptingly cool German beer bottles in the shade along the ramparts during the heat of the day.

If I were to hazard a guess at my spirit animal, it would likely be a mountain goat–during my time in the military, hurling myself up hills carrying heavy backpacks was probably the one thing for which I actually had some aptitude–and as a result the ascent up a hillside to the wall stirred my spirit animal into being.

Having reached the top at a fair lick, beads of sweat falling onto the wall’s masonry, my T-shirt sticking to my back, I’d got a fair thirst on which made resisting those German beers all the more harder, in spite of the exorbitant prices.

Fortunately the journey back down wasn’t as physically demanding or thirst inducing, involving an unexpected toboggan run along a metal chute winding its way to the bottom of the hill where our bus was waiting for the drive back to Beijing.