Posts tagged China
My friend emailed me this article, and it is such a beautiful place that I couldn’t help but post it here to share with you. I did take a trip to Beijing, Shanghai, Xian, and a few other places in China, but this place from the pictures looks so serene. I hope I can make a trip to visit this beautiful place soon.
Hubei, China is such a beautiful place, and even though it is not often mentioned by people,
but it has a reputation. There is an area often called “Little Tibet in Hubei,” “Shangri-La in Hubei,” or “Legend of the Secret.”
CNN regards it as “China’s most beautiful wonderland!” China’s National Geographic calls it “the most beautiful place in China!”
Yes, it is the city of Enshi!
When you go there, you will find it is not of this world, like a paradise or a wonderland.
Spring flowers bloom like a piece of brocade,
Summer feels more like a “natural air-conditioned room” – it is a veritable “cool city!”
In the autumn, fir and maple trees weave a beautiful picture from heaven.
Winters are snow-capped, like that of Northern scenery, when the area seems to become a “Chinese version of the Alps!”
Numerous sceneries are hidden here.
The beauty will take your breath away!
The magnificent scenery of Enshi Canyon, about 108 km long! It is as marvelous as the Grand Canyon in the USA.
Enshi Grand Canyon also contains a variety of land-forms: cliffs, peaks, caves, natural bridges, rivers, shafts, peak clusters, hanging valleys…
It is amazing to see both cliffs and peaks here. Walking on the 300-meter-high cliff promenade, I think I would be trembling.
One Incense Pillar is a thin pillar standing between the cliffs and peaks of the 108-kilometer-long Enshi Canyon. This incense stick-shaped peak is 150 meters tall, but only four meters wide, which makes it incredible that it stands at all, let alone that it’s survived several major earthquakes.
Qing River in Enshi.
Tenglong Cave is believed to be the longest single cave system in the world. The cave entrance is 74 m (243 ft) and 64 m (210 ft) wide, leading to 59.8 km (37.2 mi) of passageways. An underground network of streams runs for 16.8 km (10.4 mi) whilst the cave is the source of the Qingjiang River.
CNN recently published a short documentary about two elderly Chinese men, Jia Haixia and Jia Wenqi.
Haixia lost his eyesight sixteen years ago and Wenqi had both arms amputated as a child.
In 2001, the two friends decided to plant trees in a nearby forest, which had become a wasteland.
The friends help one another through their individual difficulties.
Haixia rolls up Wenqui’s pants as they prepare to cross the river, and Wenqui carries Haixia on his back.
The men use the branches they cut down as saplings, saving money by not buying new seeds.
Wenqui holds the bucket with his toes while Haixia plants the saplings.
From 2002 to today, over tens of thousands of trees have been planted, transforming the wasteland into 50 acres of greenery. Haixia says, “I am his hands. He is my eyes.”
Two old people say do not cut down a tree; it should be left to future generations.
CNN has covered the two friends’ journey in transforming what was once a barren wasteland to a beautiful forest.
Unfortunately, the forest the pair had worked so hard to build for over a decade flooded and was destroyed in July. However, Mother Nature cannot stop the pair. This obstacle has only made them stronger, as their testimony is full of heart.
Nightingale – Yanni
I usually wake up early in the morning and pray. One morning, as I sat down to pray, I heard a chorus of many birds singing the most captivating tune. Each bird had a distinctly different sound, leading me to believe that they were of different species. The different voices provided a beautiful, harmonious sound. It was quite soothing and left me feeling rejuvenated and ready to begin my day.
Talking about bird singing, I remembered my favorite song written and performed by Yanni. The song is called Nightingale, and during a performance at Forbidden City, China, he explained to the audience that he drew inspiration for the song from a bird that sung by his window every sunset during a stay in Venice, Italy.
The bird, so joyously and peacefully sang her song for him every night, leaving him completely mesmerized. During his performance he said that birds have a tremendous vocabulary, succinct rhythms and engaging melodies. His only wish was that we were able to communicate or speak each other’s language.
Image is from www.romanrivervalley.co.uk
Luckily, many years later, he came across the Chinese Flute. He found this high-pitched instrument to be a perfect tool to use to express the song that the bird sang for him. Then the beautiful Nightingale was born.
I often visualize this beautiful scene of the nightingale singing whenever I listened to Yanni’s song. Never would I expect a similar occurrence happening to me. In my case, it wasn’t just one bird, there were many. They were all singing in unison, and it was perfect. Once they showed up for their first performance they kept reappearing every time I prayed, no matter what time I prayed and no matter where I prayed. Whether it was 1:00, 2:00 or 4:00 in the morning, at home in California or during a visit to Tokyo, they were always there. I was pleasantly surprised by their presence and comforted by their company. Yet. I wondered, what were they singing?
Image is from hotchpotching.wordpress.com
I began to think more deeply about this question early one morning during prayer: What were they singing? Were they trying to convey a particular message? Then all of a sudden, “The Voice” said, “I love you.” I was overjoyed and overwhelmed. This message touched me so deeply that my eyes began to flood with tears. From that day forward, each time I heard the birds singing their song, I was reminded of His love. His message has provided me with tremendous strength during times of sorrow and loneliness. When I feel sad or discouraged, all I have to do is remember to listen to the birds and I am able to move on fearlessly in life.
“I love you,” these three little words keep ringing my ears every time I hear the bird’s singing. It fills my body with His love. The energy of love flows through me, and it is so abundant that I can’t keep it all inside. I have to share it with the world: I love you all, too.
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Long Beach, California
Whenever I read articles written by bloggers describing their love and affection for their homeland, it makes me miss my home. Most everyone wants to be home. I, too, yearn to be back home. The only problem is that I don’t know where my home is.
As I revisit scenes from my childhood, I remember standing shyly in front of a classroom full of new faces, waiting for my teacher to introduce me to my new peers. I can still feel my face heat up from the embarrassment I repeatedly experienced as I drifted into countless classrooms throughout Taiwan as “the new kid.”
As a manager of a bank, my father was always dispatched to different cities. This was the case throughout my entire adolescence. Just when we would start to feel comfortable in our new home, my dad would receive the order that it was time to relocate to a new town.
Finally, my father was assigned to a permanent position in Chungli, Taiwan, which is about 40 minutes driving distance from Taipei. Ironically enough, just when he would finally settle-down and take root in a place to call home, it was time for me to leave and start college. I never really grew close enough with Chungli, as it was just a place I came to visit during my holidays and vacations while I attended National Taiwan University in Taipei.
After I graduated from National Taiwan University, my husband, who I had met during my Sophomore year in college, and I left for the United States to pursue graduate degrees: I went to pursue a Master’s in Botany, and my husband sought a Ph.D. in Biochemistry. I went to Logan, Utah for a brief time then transferred to Urbana-Champaign, University of Illinois.
Once we both had completed our studies, my husband and I ended up spending time in Boston, Los Angeles and Mobile, Alabama. We also bought hotels in Phoenix and Dallas. Remembering all of the places I’ve lived throughout my life, I can’t help but scratch my head and wonder – where is the place that I call home?
Several years ago, my son and I travelled to China. I had anticipated that it would feel like a strange place for me. Unexpectedly, however, the people, culture and places we came in contact with seemed unusual familiar. Was I back in touch with my roots?
The whole experience back in China left me puzzled. I thought about it over and over, convinced that if I thought about it long enough, I’d determine whether or not China was my true home. Unable to arrive at any conclusion, I asked God to provide me with an answer to my question, “where is my true home?”
Once a Mexican lady told me that I was a “well-round person.” When I asked her what she meant by that, she said that I was very worldly, as if I was from the many corners of the world. She even suggested that while I may not have actually been from all over this world in this lifetime, I must have lived in different parts of the world in previous lives.
Is this the answer that I’ve been searching for? If so, it’s safe to say that while there is no one place in the world for me to call my home, I simply call the world my home. My roots, instead of clenching strong and confined to just one part of the earth, reach so far that I can claim everywhere as my home. And yet, I know this is the case not just because I’ve lived in so many places throughout my life, but because of my understanding and interpretation of the word “home.”
The ancient Roman philosopher Gaius Plinius Secundus once said, “home is where the heart is,” and I can not agree more. You see, home is wherever we feel the love that is in our hearts. Therefore, in order to identify where home is, all we need to do is look inward. Home isn’t a place itself; it’s the feeling that the place provides us with. If we feel love and warmth, we’re home.
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Recently, my friend asked me the reason why I posted the first article “Oh, mom! I love you!” and dedicated it to my mom. In truth, I never told her that I loved her and I was thankful for what she did for me. I had tears in my eyes as I wrote this. It pained me that I did not tell her and I will not have anymore chances because she passed away many years ago. How I wish she were alive, then I could hug her and express my gratitude and appreciation toward her.
On my trip to China at the end of August, I had a conversation with a woman who was in a hurry to go back to Shanghai to visit her sick mother. She was weeping and worried that her mom would not make it this time.
She kept telling me what she wanted to do when she went back. One thing that she had in mind was to wash her mom’s hands and feet. Seeing me puzzled, she told a story about a young man.
Once an outstanding young man went to a big company to apply for a manager position. He passed the preliminary examination, then he was interviewed by the president, who would make the final decision for hiring. The president discovered that this young man scored high throughout his studies. As such, he started to question about who paid for his tuition. Unexpectedly, the young man told him that his mother took care of that because his father passed away when he was one year old.
He thought that his mother must have held the high position in some company to be able to take care of this young man’s tuition. Yet he was told the mother was washing laundry for the customers. Thereby, he asked this man to show him his hands–only to discover his hands were soft and without blemish. Out of his curiosity, he asked whether he has ever cleaned the laundry for his mother. Just as he expected, the answer was no, because the young man was told to spend more time studying by his mother, and also she washed the clothes faster than him.
The president requested him to go home to wash his mom’s hands and come back the next day to see him. With somewhat positive feeling of chance being hired , he was very happy to follow the president’s quest. At first his mom was shocked by son’s unusual request, but she gave him her hands anyway. As he held these wrinkled, rough, and wounded hands, he could not help shedding his tears. He discovered that her hands had been seriously damaged and the wounded area caused great pain to her when touched by the water. He finally realized these hands with bruises helped to make money to pay for his tuition, and make who he is now.
After washing his mother’s hands, he quietly finished washing the remaining uncleaned clothes for her. They talked for a very long time that night.
The next day, he went back to president’s office. Seeing the swollen eyes of this man, the president asked him what had transpired the night before. The young man told him that he followed the president’s instruction to wash his mom’s hands and finished washing the remaining clothes. The president then asked about his feelings. He told the president that he learned to appreciate his mom who helped him to become a successful person. His mom paid the price and sacrificed so much in order to help him to where he is now. What a fantastic mom she is and how precious this relationship is.
The president was moved by his remarks and told him that he was just the person that he was looking for. He wanted someone who appreciates others’ hard work and not someone who makes money as first priority.
Because of the president’s visionary request was fulfilled, he hired this young man and was greatly rewarded in return. Later, this young man with his appreciative attitude, was loved by his subordinates and together they work hard as a team, and the company grew tremendously because of their teamwork.