Snowfall in Mei Lin, Jiangxi Province

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As a terrible winter storm raced across America, hitting the east coast with record snowfalls, falling temperatures and flooding, there was also unbelievable cold and snowfall all over China.

In fact, in southern China people anxiously awaited the arrival of snow in places like Guangzhou and Shenzhen, where they rarely, if ever, get to see nature’s beauty in the form of snow.

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Mei Lin is small mountain range near the city of Nanchang. During the spring and summer it is a wonderful place to go mountain climbing taking in the beautiful sights of blossoming flowers and rolling bamboo trees.

While the snowfall in Jiangxi Province did not reach the astronomical totals as east coast America, it did present its own set of dangerous circumstances for people living in the Province. I could not get to the top of Mei Lin Mountain due to the dangerous condition of ice on the mountain roads. Still, there were some sights to capture photographically as people endured the brutally cold weather and take in the sights of a rare snowfall.

 

Mei Lin Mountain is wonderful place for peace and solitude, whether in the winter, spring or summer. As the seasons change I will strive to present other images of this quiet mountain respite.

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Mei Lin Mountain can be translated as “beautiful jade mountain or forest”. It truly is a wonderful place to meditate or taking a hike to commune with the wonders of nature.

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Wuzhen, China

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Happy New Year!

In bringing in this New Year I spent the weekend in the water town of Wuzhen, located in eastern China, near the city of Hangzhou. Here is how it is described from the Service Guide to this famous town:

“Wuzhen is a historical water town in the south of the Yangtze River Delta with a history of 1300 years. There are ancient stone bridges floating on mild water, stone pathways between the mottled walls and delicate wood carvings. In addition, Wuzhen displays uniqueness through its profound cultural background.”

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Wuzhen hosted the first World Internet Conference in 2014 and also played host for the second World Internet Conference in 2015. For information about these two conferences you can go here: http://giplatform.org/events/2015-world-internet-conference, and here:http://www.cnn.com/2015/12/15/asia/wuzhen-china-internet-xi-jinping/

International guests convened in a very modern conference center, discussing ways to use and protect the usage of the Internet.

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If you are looking for a place in China for a respite against large crowds (except of course during Chinese holiday seasons), great food and many places to purchase gifts and cultural artifacts I highly recommend Wuzhen.

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Countryside – Fuzhou, Jiangxi Province

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Some of the children who came out to see the Black stranger in their village.

These children are called the “left-behind children” because their parents have left the village to hopefully find work in the cities. Their parents go to Beijing, Shanghai, Guanzhou, etc. hoping to find jobs to give their families a better life. They are called migrant workers. These children are left in the villages in the care of grand-parents or other relatives. These children, as they get older will go to a school in the nearest town, in a boarding situation, and possibly come home to their village on weekends. They cannot attend schools in the cities. They will see their parents during the major holiday, Spring Festival.  This is occurring throughout China.

Explore the Spirit

JLM

Countryside in Fuzhou, Jiangxi Province

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So, as the economic prosperity begins to trickle down to the farmers, the first thing they may do is to build a better house in the village. However, they do not live in the houses because they have gone to the cities to find work that will pay better than framing. They are called migrant workers. So…unless they have grandparents or other family members to live in the homes they remain vacant all year, until the great migration of people occur during the annual Spring Festival (Chinese New Year). That’s when virtually everyone in China returns to their village to celebrate the new year (see my earlier posts).

Explore the Spirit

JLM

Terra Cotta Warriors – Last, Last Time

DSC_2143Each figure is full size with a different facial expression, indicating that they were modeled after actual soldiers of that time. While 3 pits are currently being unearthed and documented, there are at least six other pits that have yet to be touched. The Chinese Government is waiting for technology to catch-up before disturbing these pits so as to preserve their original integrity. It has been documented that there were six thousand soldiers recovered from pit number one to date.

Explore the Spirit

JLM