I am back from China.
To get here, I caught a non-stop flight out of Wuhan to San Francisco. China Southern was comfortable, the food acceptable and I had great company. Yuan returning to her home in Palo Alto after visiting family in Wuhan sat next to me. Never chatted so much on a long flight!
Currently, I am working on a post about the trip.
Since I have been back the schedule has been wall to wall with this and that.
Over the past few weeks I have taken a vacation from blogging.
The time has been filled with restoring the back garden and testing my new Silk Road cookbooks. One of my granddaughters came to Davis for a long visit. We baked cookies, made art, and drummed among some other activities.
Oh must not forget that due to my friend Anne, I also had a chance to see Lady Gaga in Sacramento! All I can say about the concert is Wow!
The vacation continues tomorrow with a trip to China. This will be the first time I do not take my computer and blog from along the way. The computer has become such a friend, it feels strange to be leaving without it. However, my partner and I are touring the ancient Silk Road (explains the new cookbooks) and I want to focus on what is along the pilgrimage. I will take copious notes and share all of it when I return.
For those who live in Texas, my thoughts and light-filled intentions are with you.
I will be back in October!
As I was sitting on the deck of our home in Davis and about to open the notes in my China journal I was distracted by a play of light on the wall behind the pond. The sun peaking through disciplined spaces along the overhang created an ephemeral piece of art that rivaled much of what I had seen during my years as an art critic. Abstract expressionism at its best! A fleeting frame of light walling off transient flickers led my mind into unbounded space. It felt so good to be back.
After slowly working my way through my journal notes from the last trip to China, I realized that I had better conclude soon as the next trip is beginning to rise on the horizon. So, back to the journey through Hangzhou with Jing, our guide.
The problem with having an itinerary with reserved guides and hotels is just that. An itinerary has to be honored. Just when I had begun to feel at home in Xi’an and wanted to hang a bit longer, a plan to visit Hangzhou another ancient capitol, city of silk and hand fans, lay waiting. Sadly, I paid my goodbyes to Lily and our guide Liu Li. I felt like I was leaving close friends.
As a young graduate student of religious studies at McMaster University in Hamilton, Ontario, I remember reading about how the ancient Silk Road created a way for several countries to exchange not only silk, but other goods, culture, mythologies, philosophies and spiritual traditions. One of those traditions Buddhism, brought to China by monks from India traveling the Silk Road established a strong center in the city of Luoyang. Considered to be one of the cradles of Chinese civilization, today Luoyang thrives as an industrial town. Nearby, the ancient Buddhist caves known as the Longmen Grottoes line the cliffs at the gate of the Yi River.
I have not posted on my trip to Zhongguo for awhile, but I think of it almost daily. When I do not, I am reminded by the news articles and reports on China that seem to make their way across my desktop with remarkable regularity.
Today, our day trip from Xi’an to the Jade Valley Wine Resort in Lantian County came to mind.
Back from a wonderful trip to Japan I am finally able to resume sharing the wonderful pilgrimage I had to China last month.
I have so much left to share about China, but I am going to Japan today and will be offline for two weeks. Will continue with China when I return.
FYI: One of my readers told me that she did not know that words in color are links to an explanation or information on the term or site. In the former post, clicking on the blue-green Wuhan in the first sentence will provide more information on yes, the city of Wuhan.
Only two days in Wuhan and it felt as though I had lived in China from a beginning. I did not know the exact timing of that beginning, in a past life perhaps, I only knew that I felt at home and safe. And, home rescinded to the backyards, no that is too close, home retracted to a distant horizon deep in my mind.