The Hangzhou Grand Theatre in the new CBD was the setting for Push hands training with Teacher Liu and his students this morning. There was a BMW sponsored running event across the way so we had a live band playing Beatles, Stones, Joan Jet and Disney classics for a soundtrack. After a few hours Teacher Liu took me across town on the back of his electric scooter and we had lunch including some very potent red wine he made himself.
After lunch was more training and Lang Jingchang joined us.
Bus services are everywhere in Hangzhou and it seems I will get to experience a few routes at least. It costs 2 RMB (35c) to get half an hour across town to the CBD.
Relaxed easy day today, recovering from 22 hours in transit yesterday. The weather is cool and wet with unrelenting drizzle all day.
After sleeping in and a leisurely breakfast I walked under the umbrella for 4 hours, covering some familiar ground, but noting the appearance and disappearance of businesses. In a back street I found an excellent fresh food market with all sorts of live seafood and amphibians, meat, eggs, fruit and veg. Would be handy if I had a kitchen.
Had lunch at a little eatery, 12 RMB (about $2) for more than I could eat spicy chicken, tofu, beans, celery, cauliflower and rice.
Taking advantage of the wifi in my room to study Mandarin and stay out of the rain for the afternoon.
The pagoda in the picture is in a heavily builtup area with elevated motorway on the left and shops all around, in a spot I’ve been many times at night and never noticed it before.
Our World Tai Chi Day event at Kings Beach Amphitheatre was a great success with around 50 Tai Chi Practitioners from across the Sunshine Coast attending. Thanks to all those who attended, performed and assisted to make the event possible, especially our sponsor Caloundra Community bank Branch Bendigo Bank, St john's, Sunshine Coast Council, Bev Murphy and her Tai Chi For Health group, Nathan Coxon and his Chen Tai Chi group, Ahtee Chia from The Tai Chi and Chi Gong Centre Maleny, Peter Watts who shared his Chi Gong forms, and of course everyone from the Australian Niu Chunming Tai Chi Institute and our special guest Master Paul Li from the Zhejiang Chuan Zhong Martial Arts Research Institute, Hangzhou, China. Everyone seemed to enjoy the morning and support for organising the day again next year was solid. Hopefully we cah make this an annual event.
Warm morning with a cool breeze off the lake. Very slow practice this morning, aiming for long form to take more than 50 minutes with continuous circular movement. Last day of push hands training with much review and still more new information. A very happy day for all of us. Teacher Liu is pleased with our work ethic and tells us we have improved very much in our 7 days of training.
The afternoon was extensive practice and discussion with Mr Lang Jinchang. Several times on previous visits to Hangzhou I have met and practiced with Uncle Lang Jingchang. Today we learned that he is a Tai Chi brother to Master Li, having spent many years learning from Meng Xianming. Mr Lang has been following Mr Liu for 2 years now and it is through him that Master Li knows Mr Liu. We are very grateful to him for providing the connection which has given us such a source of information. Our session included much discussion of concepts and stories of the history of Tai Chi. The assistance of Kevin Hu with translation for the duration of our training has enabled us to form very personal relationships with Teacher Liu and Uncle Lang. We all look forward to meeting again in the future to continue our exchange of Tai Chi culture.
The early morning at the Lake was clear with a slight breeze. The natives seemed fascinated by our practice this morning as we used a fairly quick pace.
More instruction in our session before lunch with a couple of new insights shared. In the afternoon 3 of teacher Liu’s followers came in to practice with us. They were very helpful, each with their own style, and we performed much better with them than with Liu. The week has definitely produced improvements in our skill.
In the evening we ate at a Japanese restaurant in the city. A good diversion from our usual fare.
After another full day of hand pushing we caught a bus to a very big eco-preservation Park on the outskirts of the city. We walked about 5 km through forest to the Hangzhou Cuisine Museum which exhibits the rich history of local food culture.
We were hosted by Lin Guoqing, and several other of Master Li’s Disciples. The food was sensational to say the least. We started with a tea flavoured cake to celebrate Kieran’s birthday, and feasted on a vast range of dishes.
The warmth and generosity of our hosts is eyond description and we hope to return the hospitality in Australia in future.