The days at school in 2017

The days at school in 2017

Extrait de mon blog dédié à mes séjours d’entrainement en Chine (séjour 2017) Reportage 12

Since Saturday Night I am at school again. At first I got in a hurry a room. All other points to be regulated the next day.

So I firstly unpacked, took a little shower and went to bed and to join the next morning the breakfast.

At this stage I noticed that in difference to my last journey ALL has been for free. The reader may remembers that at that time even a boiled has had to be bought for one Yuan, like so many other things. Seen like that a positive surprise already. Furthermore id didn’t take long time until I met the first mate of the year 2015 again by chance: A friend from Taiwan and his kids.

And then the master assistant Ms. HU, with whom I had a quite good relationship. During breakfast already she proposed to teach me the fan form. This is quite good as like that I would get a “one – on – one” training and I would get saved of the notorious kicks and punches.

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So, a bit later into the office to regulate the administrative stuff. At first the payments which is usual out here. Also at this stage to my surprise: As I am a master disciple I got a 500 Yuan reduction! 

At the other hand I had to notice quite quickly that the new personal, two young girls, almost could not understand or speak English! All has had to be done via my lousy Chinese or smartphone applications for direct translation.

Well then, at this stage I describe straight away what has been changed at school since last time:

As just mentioned food in the self is now fully free of charge and taste became even better.

The rooms are the same; that means in clear that the air-condition just works by chance, the ventilation in the Bathroom does not work at all however there is permanently hot water available (and cold as well, of course…), the sweet water tank in my room should have been filled up however is not.

The brick manufacturer in front of the school has quasi disappeared; at least it is not any longer active which makes the stay at school much more pleasant!

Furthermore the site itself has changed a lot too; There is now an artificial face of the rock with eventually in service waterfall, several trees and shrubs, finally a real parkway providing a really cozy – convenient atmosphere. As a matter a fact this is also due that the daily – music does not any longer squawks around in this martial penetrant manner.

Additionally there are now much more foreign students than in 2015. Mainly those staying a bit longer. – From between 3 weeks up to 3 years… there is a French gus from closeby Tarbes, 3 Novegians, an Egyptian, Southafrica, Australis, 2 Italians, Taiwan, another German (and what a chance: He is from Hamburg…), England,…

Back to the morning office visit.

I immediately took the opportunity getting Ms HU registered as my trainer. This has been refused straight away by two young girls as from their point of view I would need someone much younger and additionally Ms HU would have so many students already. My argument however has been that I just need someone competent being able teaching me the fan form within 2 weeks. But whatever, at the end I got Ms HU and as only student she has… me.

After that I went at first by bus – very much to the displeasure of the office as they meant it being better to go by Taxi – to town. The aim has been getting a lot of Tai Chi clothes ordered and to buy a fan, to look around, eat, drink and to start easily during the afternoon the training.

However since my last visit a lot has been changed in Wudangshan! The pedestrian walk became a real one, most shops were ordered in new well looking houses, it is clean, no stinky morning market. Please do not hesitate to compare with photos of the year 2015! This led to the fact that I really had to search for my former tailor with that I have been quite satisfied. In any way, I got all this and the order has been done thanks to my good preparation (I have been drawing all on a paper and have written in Chinese the colors that I wanted to get). In a similar way it turned out with purchasing the fan, order noodles and afterwards going in the local youth hostel to chill-out.

In the afternoon than the training had to start. At first stretching, this is the same since two years before starting the real form. I have to admit that the handling of such a fan is actually a bit more complicated and the spiraling opposing body movements are more difficult than expected.

But Ms HU is really patient with me and my feeling has been that we have had done after 1 ½ days easily a third of the form. If that would continue like that I would need exactly one week only to get the form done. And then I would have more than enough time for the fine tuning and do other things. To be seen.

Than I allowed myself an almost misconduct.

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I have brought for the master French red wine as I know that the people here like that a lot. I just have been at training when the master stepped into my way. In my usual reactivity of taking a quick decision I immediately spoke to him and offered him the wine well wrapped. Visibly he really liked that, BUT! Ms HU stand aside and her disappointment that the wine has not been for her was really very much visible… Well than, now I really owe her something…

 Accordingly I went Tuesday to town and had a look for French wine. Effectively I managed getting one for a basically correct price.

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After the afternoon training I gave the wine to Ms HU. – She was so happy, like a little child, really amazing to see! 

Now it is Wednesday and so there is only in the morning for few hours training before going to weekend until Thursday included.

Well, what to say, I have finished the Wudang Sanfeng form! – After a record of time of 3 days… Ok, I admit, I feel my little brain pretty much overloaded and will study about subtleties. I suppose reserving for that another 3 relaxed day and then to be seen what’s next.

During the first free afternoon I went with two other students to the old school of master Chen where we met his brother and got tea with him. Per chance several chinese tourists came over. As a result I have had to demonstrate one of those sword forms which I did, but not really well. I just didn’t take any effort on that. On the way back we did some shopping as well, had dumblings, got a tea in the youth hostel und finally met with the other foreign students for a little party.

My daily training is until now like that:

Get up at 07:00, half an hour of standing Qi Gong.

Breakfast, some muscle training, refreshing and further to stretching.

Than training within the form that takes roughly 2 hours. Than a break, lunch included until 15:00.

After that again some stretching and continuing the form, roughly 2 hours as well. Than quickly eat again and another hour to train the form and that’s it.

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As I woke up as usual at 07:00 I thought quite quickly about how it would be like to miss the canteen – breakfast. I followed that idea as soon, turned myself around and next time it has been 09:30 already… 

In my sweet time swallowed a in beforehand bought instant noodle soup and some cackes and got ready for the day.

The first station should have been the “Taiji – Lake”. I have been there 2 years ago already. To remember: At that time the so called “Marina” has been in place already, most stores however were closed, other buildings under construction and the lake itself has been at this place grasslands.

Well, this time: The “marina” is still there, most stores closed (or at least around lunch time and they did not look like as they would be open to another hour), other buildings – right! – still under construction and the lake itself however even had water, however at the dockings for the boats there were no boats. Whatever, since a while there has been a lot of rain, so it is ok that in a lake is a bit of water, right? Only boats do not come from nothing. Therefore I continued my way. Two years ago already a giant hotel – tourism – complex in the style of a pagoda has been under construction. The news is that there are no the stairs under construction. Aha. Well, so I continued my way. Direction to the geological museum. In that time we have had a photo session there for the masters classes. I admit that the way along the lakeshore is pretty much nice! The place in front of the museum, I almost don’t dare to write it, however the wooden floor is almost completely….broken… And the museum itself? Is closed and nothing is written like when it would be possible to enter. So I went almost the entire way back. This time direction to the Taiji – Stadium (or something like that). I would have liked having a look into it again. But same for here, correct, closed. Admitted, that has been a bit disappointing.

With the time being my level of blood sugar has significantly dropped down. That has been because it has been again pretty much humid and hot and I have done already several kilometers by walking.

That’s why I went on the direct way to town. And shame and ash on me: I turned into a Chinese burger store, took a well spiced up burger, fried, onion rings and a keg of coke! – Really tasty and nourishing, even though I am really not sure at all about which kind of meat I have eaten; It doesn’t matter, the spices made it tasty.

Afterwards the way continued to the downtown temple where I picked out a calm place to chill – out, in other words to do a real catnap. Like that another hour passed by quickly.

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Finished with catnapping I went through downtown checking out stores where by chance a passed by my tailor seeing a pair of nice leather Taiji shoes. So I went in. To my surprise my orders were almost completed already! Therefore I took another one hour there, experienced how fat female Chinese tourists tried purchasing Kung Fu robes, were fucked up und finally I left with a huge package of my new robes and very good shoes for low money.

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As I have been promising some friends to bring tea, I finished that as well. For that I went into the place to go known by me where also there they recognized me again! 

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Here as well I got good value for my money and continued to my favorite coffee shop (for a tea as I survive with coffee since 2 weeks for now) which is placed in front of the “Taiji – Place”aside to the Wudang museum. – Curious, by any reason almost everything out here has a name with “Taiji” and “Dao”…

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Well, the place to go for dinner was recommended to me by my former Ba Gua Zhang teacher who told me straight away “as you cannot read: what you want to get are the first two choices out of the menu hanging out in the store”. – Seen like that, no further questions.  What has been served is a kind of pancake made of puff pastry and included meat during baking. It has been delicious even though I did not get the point in difference to both pancakes.

As for the further training:

As described in the previous article, I managed indeed after three days only to finish the fan form. And I have been asking myself the question how my training would continue like. The question again got resolved on its own as Ms HU started drilling me indeed in all little details, or in other words doing a “fine – tuning” on and with me. A really fussy affair. No question that I did the one or other movements not correct at the basis. However the question is if each single movement and position has to be basically on a millimeter “perfect” or not. And being “perfect” is as usual very very relative, especially under aspect that Ms HU herself has had to have a look from time to time to a video made by and with our head couch to know if what she is teaching is correct.

As a result it happened several times that she just corrected something and a bit later corrected back. Whatever, close the eyes and go through! I the meanwhile a kung fu brother joined us who become mater disciple of the 16th generation at the same time like I.

On Saturday evening Ms HU allowed me to skip evening classes but to get tea and to play Guqin with her (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Guqin, http://www.philmultic.com/home/instruments/guqin.html ) respectively to have a look how she plays. This instrument fascinates me again and again. A very beautiful sound and a interesting technique to play. Nevertheless I would say it would be better to get under control my Chinese Xiao – Flute, especially as it is pretty much difficult to find someone in Europe who could teach me the Guqin. Therefore at first, no touch!

However and as foreseen Ms HU has had to leave school on Monday morning for several days. So again the question: What should I do? Therefore I stepped in the morning into the office to get information and to propose that at each first hour of a class in the morning and afternoon I could do the warm up and during the following hours I would continue my fan form. But again many communication issues occurred with both employees with result that they had to bring in the lady from the school shop in order to translate and this is what she did. However the office – girls just said “not possible”; Therefore I explained that again: I have finished the fan form and would like to take part in the preparation classes and that’s it. The answer became even more energetic: “NO WAY!” Reason: For the time being there are long term students only and that’s why I cannot take part into it. I am supposed to train on my own and in case of any questions I may come into the office so they could send me quickly a trainer to answer to my question. Well, well…

Not much time passed and again one out of the office stepped into my way to tell me in Chinese, later on “Chenglish” that from 15:00 I would have a trainer what I accepted gratefully and I said “alright, until 15:00 than!” In that moment the trainer arrived, a boy who’s father I could be (…) and meant, ok, let’s tart! How, what about..?? Well, no long discussion, just do it. He even wanted that I show him the fan form straight away, what I declined, as I was considering to eventually to stretching first. But whatever, some later on my fan form has been observed, corrected on 3 points and all the rest considered as correct. Out of the 2-3 points one has not been correct indeed, the others were quite exactly and as expected in opposite to Ms HU. And at this stage the story is not finished:

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A bit later I met the Master by chance and his wife as well, Ms PENG and boss of the office. I learned that basically it has been the master who has asked Ms HU to teach me (!!!WOW!!!). So I asked Ms Peng about the training topic. The announcement became clear for this time: Basically I would not be allowed to take part, however as I have been here in 2015 for several months and as I am the master disciple it would be ok for me getting integrated in the warm up classes. Meeting foreseen at 14:30 in the office. I was really happy about that. And as this is not all: Roughly one hour later I received a chat message asking if it ain’t be ok to start all that by tomorrow morning. – Well, as ever they want…. At the time when evening classes have been starting already, Ms PENG came to me asking if I do not want to take part in the evening class. Do I feel like a jack-ass? Yes. Do I take part in the training? Nooooo way…. When I start the real training the next day, I really enjoyed it a lot and it felt well! 

Again one of those days when I could ask myself “what to do”? Well, at first there has been a farewell of an egyptian student. This has been amply been done in the master – yes, the MASTERS – tea room. – With his tea and 2 students playing on the previously described Guqin. After that it happened that we even went up to the roof of the school celebrating there with youtube (!!!) music. The master has noted that with a large smile in the face.

For one of the other free days I indulged myself a massage. One of those massages given by blind people as it is said that they do have a special talent for that. However for myself I ain’t that sure if my masseur really has had talent or if he just hated me: He applied a fucking pressue onto me! I felt like in a pasta – fabric with the point that I am the pasta to be produced! But what ever, my few muscles were marvelousely kneaded through.

After several days of non stop rain the sun appeared finally ! Best opprtunity doing photos and at the end get tea at local friends places.

The Last days were really very very rainy out here with result that place to do training became quite rare.

However, like our head couch said:

It doesn’t matter of it is rainy, or about the place or circumstances, what matters is your heart!

So we Didi training and I took the opportunity for further photos. Also a nice cheesecake, fruit tea and so on in my favourite coffee should not be missed.For my farewell we went with 14 students to a nice restaurant that I have reserved. Especially as in all kindness the office managed in the meanwhile to hand out missing documents for me.

Just to relax, have fun and get ready for next long way to the next station. A dedicated article will follow…