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  • Thumbnail for Corner view of Kobo Daishi's mausoleum
  • Thumbnail for Another Jizo
  • Thumbnail for Pouring water on Jizo statue
    Pouring water on Jizo statue

    Near the end of the path to Okunoin, just prior to crossing the last bridge before going up to Kukai's mausoleum, there is a line of statues with water troughs in front of them. Vistors pour water over the statues as an act of devotion. This ritual action shares something both with the cleansing of the mouth prior to entering a Shinto shrine, where the same sort of ladle and trough is used, as well as the cleansing of ancestral gravestones that is practiced in August during the Obon season.

  • Thumbnail for Mound of Buddha images
    Mound of Buddha images

    In front of the Jizo is an offering box in which faithful can place coins to be used to maintain various features of the Okunoin area.

  • Thumbnail for Museum complex façade
    Museum complex façade

    Ranks of red banners flank the CCP insignia over the entry to the National Museum complex on the east side of tiananmen Square.

  • Thumbnail for View from Tamagawa bridge
    View from Tamagawa bridge

    Across the bridge and down the path we can see visitors gathered at the foot of the stairs to Kobo Daishi's mausoleum.

  • Thumbnail for tiananmen Square
    tiananmen Square

    tiananmen Square, including the Mao Mausoleum and Monument to the People's Heroes, seen looking south across Chang An avenue.

  • Thumbnail for Beijing street scene
    Beijing street scene

    Street in northwest Beijing's Haidian district during autumn afternoon.

  • Thumbnail for Beijing Subway Station
    Beijing Subway Station

    Bicycle commuters stream past the entrance to a Beijing subway station during afternoon rush hour.

  • Thumbnail for Western Hills
    Western Hills

    Day trippers climb the Western Hills (Xishan) northwest of Beijing.

  • Thumbnail for Jizo
  • Thumbnail for Don't Spit Please!
    Don't Spit Please!

    Weather-beaten sign on a Haidian district wall asking passersby not to spit. Expectoration was the target of public health authorities in the 1980s and beyond.

  • Thumbnail for Fragrant Hills weekenders
    Fragrant Hills weekenders

    A family of three enjoys a chairlift ride in the Fragrant Hills northwest of Beijing on an autumn weekend.

  • Thumbnail for Da Li Machine works billboard
    Da Li Machine works billboard

    Billboard for Beijing's Da Li Machine works (formerly Beijing Parts and Equipment Plant) depicts the cabled arm of a giant red machine spiraling towards the sun, touting the virtues of Da Li products for pipeline maintenance and breach occlusion.

  • Thumbnail for Shanhai guan pop stand
    Shanhai guan pop stand

    Workers hawk an orange soda drink on a sidewalk in Shanhaiguan, northeast of Beijing.

  • Thumbnail for Fencesitter

    A small child in fur jacket and hat sits on the railing lining the Long Corridor (Changlang) at the Summer Palace in northwest Beijing

  • Thumbnail for Rail worker
    Rail worker

    Worker watches a train at a railway station. 1988 was a peak year for an overtaxed rail system.

  • Thumbnail for Service Company Barber Shop
    Service Company Barber Shop

    Barber shop offering r S"&qucontemporary fashions" and "warm service."

  • Thumbnail for Bicycle repair shop
    Bicycle repair shop

    Inner tubes lie piled on the eaves of a humble Beijing bicycle repair shop

  • Thumbnail for Selling hats
    Selling hats

    Hat peddler appraises the look of his ware on a potential client.

  • Thumbnail for Tiantan Qiniandian stairs
    Tiantan Qiniandian stairs

    Designed in 1531 (by the Ming Emperor Shizong, it is said), the Temple of Heaven's Hall of Prayer for a Prosperous Year known to modern tourists is the result of a 1751 renovation. The circular roof signifies Heaven, the square base earth.

  • Thumbnail for Imperial Palace from Beihai Park
    Imperial Palace from Beihai Park

    Looking southeast from White Dagoba hill in Beijing's Beihai park, one sees the northwest corner of the Imperial Palace complex and the skyscrapers of modern Beijing in the distance.

  • Thumbnail for Makeshift window
    Makeshift window

    The subject of a blackboard urging "resolute implementation," "prevention as the mainstay" and "total annihilation" was probably a public health campaign; it now serves as a window to a Beijing apartment.

  • Thumbnail for Beijing smog
    Beijing smog

    Northwest Beijing lies under a thick layer of early winter smog generated in part by the widespread use of coal for residential heating and cooking.

  • Thumbnail for Guest house restaurant
    Guest house restaurant

    Colored bulbs and happy chefs proffering tasty dishes adorn the restaurant of a guest house for military personnel.