Already I was confused regarding the day. My iPad said Thursday but its calendar highlighted Wednesday. My laptop showed Wednesday, April 2nd. The reason for my disorientation was our schedule had been changed and I couldn’t follow remember what was next.
This is where we slept last night. Pretty swanky, but we saw no other guests.
From the hotel, we drove to the Shaolin School of Kung Fu. Our guide, Lisa, told us the attendees were 95% boys with 5% girls. We saw no girls. (She wore the same clothes as the day before: red track pants and quilted jacket. The forecast for the day: 20 degrees)
We went inside for a Kung Fu performance, which must have lasted a good half hour or more. I took a couple of videos but deleted them because they were blurry. The little guy in white, the youngest but rapidly advancing pupil, demonstrated clutching a bowl shaped object to his midriff by muscle control. To prove authenticity, a pole was inserted through a hole in the object (was it a bell?) then lifted and carried around as he hung firmly attached, belly-up.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Z4-s8TBB6dw (4.49 min) A peak at Kung Fu training.
- Home of Shaolin School of Kung Fu
- Established 495 A.D.
- 10,000 students
- Ages 3 to 18 (complete education here, equivalent to finishing high-school)
- 95% boys / 5% girls
- Half-day school / half-day Kung Fu training
- This is a private school (parents pay for room, board, and tuition)
- One month holiday in February during Chinese New Year
- Parents can come to visit on weekends
- Costs (10,000 Yuan) under $2,000 U.S. per year
- Attending this school is good for finding a job later
- Can open own Kung Fu school in other countries instead of finding a job
- Famous personalities from this school: Bruce Lee and Jackie Chan
Pagoda Forest / Shaolin Temple
A short distance away we visited the Pagoda Forest. Rain drizzled as we walked around. Young girls giggled and stared and begged to have their picture taken with the foreigners.
This is what the tombs look like.
- Graveyard with 248 tombs for important monks
- Depending on life’s accomplishments = size of tomb
- Depending on number of supporters (donations) = size of tomb
- Tombs built during an eminent monk’s lifetime, not after death, and added to till he died
Some highlights at the Temple
Protectors of the Temple
Next on September 5, Xian: Day 7, Part 2
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