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Tai Shan or (Taishan) Mountain is one of the four holy mountains of China. Tradition holds that those who spend a night on top will live to be very old. Mao did so, and upon dawn declared, "The east is red." This statement was widely circulated and would prove to be the funniest thing he ever said.

I was there in 1993. It is not an easy climb, even with stairs carved out over the centuries. 5,000 feet is/are a lot of feet (not as many meters because meters are bigger). There were elderly Chinese women who made the climb several times a day to cart beer to sell at the top.

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