How the Cookie Crumbles

Life and scribbles on the far side of SIXTY-FIVE

Shaolin: Day 7, Part 1

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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.

© All Rights Reserved. Used by permission of RJ, a member of English 8.

© All Rights Reserved. Used by permission of RJ, a member of English 8.

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)

© All Rights Reserved by Tess @ How the Cookie Crumbles

© All Rights Reserved by Tess @ How the Cookie Crumbles

© All Rights Reserved by Tess @ How the Cookie Crumbles

© All Rights Reserved by Tess @ How the Cookie Crumbles

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.

© All Rights Reserved by Tess @ How the Cookie Crumbles

© All Rights Reserved by Tess @ How the Cookie Crumbles

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Z4-s8TBB6dw  (4.49 min) A peak at Kung Fu training.

Quick Facts:

  • 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.

© All Rights Reserved by Tess @ How the Cookie Crumbles

© All Rights Reserved by Tess @ How the Cookie Crumbles

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pagoda_Forest_at_Shaolin_Temple

This is what the tombs look like.

© All Rights Reserved by Tess @ How the Cookie Crumbles

© All Rights Reserved by Tess @ How the Cookie Crumbles

© All Rights Reserved. Used by permission of RJ, a member of English 8.

© All Rights Reserved. Used by permission of RJ, a member of English 8.

Quick Facts: 

  • 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

© All Rights Reserved. Used by permission of RJ, a member of English 8.

© All Rights Reserved. Used by permission of RJ, a member of English 8. (The well is picture below)

© All Rights Reserved. Used by permission of RJ, a member of English 8.

© All Rights Reserved. Used by permission of RJ, a member of English 8.  (This is the preserved well.)

Protectors of the Temple

© All Rights Reserved. Used by permission of RJ, a member of English 8.

© All Rights Reserved. Used by permission of RJ, a member of English 8.

© All Rights Reserved. Used by permission of RJ, a member of English 8.

© All Rights Reserved. Used by permission of RJ, a member of English 8.

An Altar

© All Rights Reserved. Used by permission of RJ, a member of English 8.

© All Rights Reserved. Used by permission of RJ, a member of English 8.

Next on September 5, Xian: Day 7, Part 2

For more related posts, click on China tab at top of page

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Author: Let's CUT the Crap!

I'm getting a little LONG in the tooth and have things to say about---ouch---AGEing. I believe it's certainly a state of mind but sometimes it's nice to hear that you're NORMAL. I enjoy reading by the truckload. I'm a grandma but I don't feel OLD although I'm not so young anymore. My plan is to stick it out as long as I can on this lovely planet and only will leave it kicking and screaming!

94 thoughts on “Shaolin: Day 7, Part 1

  1. The cemetery is wonderful. Isn’t it strange all cultures have some fierce protectors of their temples?
    xxx

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  2. Smiling what wonderful pictures and I love the running narrative. This must have been the trip of a lifetime. Thanks for including me in your journey. Take care, Bill

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Swanky hotel but odd that you saw no other guests. Interesting graveyard. Reminds me of the graveyards in New Orleans that are at sea level and they build upward. Those are scary faced protectors of the Temple. Looks like this was a very interesting time. 🙂

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  4. Oh man, that protector looks scary. As for the school—“Established 495 A.D”—that’s amazing. To think it could have such longevity.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. You certainly got to see various cities and people in China. Did you ever feel just overwhelmed by the culture, and its history, so different from your own?

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  6. So fascinating Tess. The tombs are incredible as if they are small temples. That was quite the hotel you were staying at!

    Liked by 1 person

  7. These are amazing pictures. Like many others I was intrigued by the graveyard. I’m excited to read the next post!.

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  8. So beautiful Tess. I would have thoroughly enjoyed this day, all of it.

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  9. Have you an explanation for the concrete arrangement with the two posts and the hole? This looks like one of the most interesting visits of the tour!

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  10. Brill’ love the signs etc being in english. I had a date problem also, I forgot to alter the time to local time on my camera… 😉

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  11. Wow! So interesting and great pictures. I wish I’d be a little mouse in your pocket.

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  12. Hi Tess ~ Oh the cemetery is so different looking – like a village of tiny temples.
    I’m enjoying this trip 🙂
    Ellespeth

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  13. Reblogged this on Smorgasbord – Variety is the spice of life and commented:
    You will find several posts on a visit to China on How the cookie crumbles and if you have missed the previous six days you can catch up in the China directory. In the meantime I enjoyed this post particularly as I have seen Shaolin warriors perform and they are spectacular.

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  14. Stunning sculptures & great pictures telling a fascinating story!

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  15. I wouldn’t want to mess with the temple guards!

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  16. The school is very cool, it has such a long history and Bruce Lee! Love the graveyard and the protectors. Just think, only $2000 a year, some schools here cost that a month and those are the cheap ones.

    I simply love your travels. I am so glad you jumped on this one.

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  17. fascinating! I’m surprised they let in any females to the Kung Fu school. How long was your trip again? I like how you’re doing your recap of the trip with a snippet a week 🙂

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    • Me too. But even at 5%, that’s 500 girls and we saw nary a one. 😦
      My trip was 24 days. I could make the posts longer instead of breaking into parts, but going by my own experience, I don’t have time to read all the blogs I subscribe to let alone l-o-n-g ones. ❤

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      • wow! I didn’t realize it was so long. and I know what you mean about not having time to read….another reason I like the way you’re posting about the trip is that I know there will be a post every Friday and so I’ve tried to remember to look for it! maybe after year end is over at work I might be able to stick to a regular posting schedule. oh to be retired 😉

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      • 😀 😀 😀 You’re sweet to read every Friday. Thank you. Thank you.
        I’ll have to plan another trip, me thinks before I finish this series. 😮

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      • well sure!! you know me, Ms. Loves to travel. and I love reading about others’ trips too 🙂 where are you going next?

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      • 😀 😀 😀 I’ve no plans yet but I do have the itch. It would be nice to get something planned near end of winter in March.
        ❤ ❤ Where you you going next?

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      • where else? SPAIN!!! ha ha. actually we’re hoping to go to Spain again 3/16 but we’ll see. next up is a trip to Florida to visit my mother in early November. you should definitely go somewhere in March 🙂

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      • Space would do FINE. Anywhere warm would be (choke, gasp) wonderful. 😀

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  18. I want those temple protectors to be in charge of security for my house! Great pictures, interesting narrative, Tess.

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  19. I like the things you notice–no other guests, the muscle control demonstration, the drizzly rain. I can hear footsteps echoing inside, squishy outside. Interesting series, Tess.

    You have another fan over on my blog who read your explanation for creating a heart ❤ and loved it. Huzzah!

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    • You always make me smile. Thank you for reading about my trip and saying such lovely things.

      About the heart, someone else showed me, I believe–can’t remember now. I’m not smart enough to think up something like this myself. Have a lovely Sunday. ❤ ❤

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  20. It’s always amazing to me how so much can be packed into one day. You’ve truly experienced a magnificent adventure.

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    • The one thing I will say–and I’m sure I’m repeating myself–we got the best bang for our buck.I pleased all to heck I have had this opportunity. 😀
      Thanks you for continuing to visit and comment. ❤ ❤

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  21. Those temple protectors would scare me. 🙂

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  22. The protectors are scary, but that’s the idea I guess. Of course I love the cemetery photos 🙂 and the hotel looks amazing, another full on day and sore tootsies no doubt? 🙂

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  23. It must have been creepy being the only guests in the hotel!
    What a fascinating trip to the cemetery (and what a strange place to take tourists!)

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    • It did feel strange not to see other guests.

      Maybe a strange place to take tourist, but this is a historical site attached to a temple. Who would have thought monks would have enough donations to build such large structures. These are started before the monk dies. Guess it’s a good thing donations continue until death when it can be completed. I’m beginning to feel this is rather complicated. 🙂

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      • Well, they obviously believe they are worth all that time and money, which is lovely. I think it is a bit sad that we now have cremations and the old fashioned graves are less popular. Once the memory of the person has faded with a generation or two, there is nothing tangible left to show where that person existed.

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      • That’s a great point. It didn’t occur to me that after a generation cremated people truly disappear. Wow. Something to think about although I have already arranged cremation. Maybe my daughter will put something on her headstone to the effect I am buried with her. We must talk.
        Thank YOU, Madoqua. ❤

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  24. Wow! What a trip. These photos really tell a story.
    Amazing that school is one half Kung Fu training.
    The Shaolin Temple is beautiful.

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    • And has withstood the test of time. Of course, visitor tickets must pay for upkeep. Still, it is very old. In fact, the school building–what we saw when we ladies had to use the facilities–need scraping, sanding and painting.

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  25. Impressed with the bowl held by tummy muscles. Do you think that boy will have enough supporters for a really big tomb?

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    • He might if he becomes a month but it seems there were no new structures. These were all ancient. Having graduated from this school at eighteen, your attendance looks good on a resume for further education or opening a school of your own..

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  26. A feast for the eyes! I enjoyed looking at the photos, Tess.

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  27. That hotel looks super posh! Very interesting post, Tess. Thanks for sharing 🙂

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  28. You’re certainly packing a lot into your visit.

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  29. This looks like a fascinating day out. I meant to mention before how you noticed that despite the warm weather, the locals dressed as if for a cool or even cold day. To us 20C would be a pleasant summer’s day 🙂 Never seen tombs like that and as for those Protectors, well, I wouldn’t want to bump into them in a dark alley. Another thoroughly enjoyable post and love the photos giving such a wonderful visual tour. Great stuff as always Tess 🙂 ❤ 😀

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  30. This tour of China is excellent. I love how the focus is on the everyday and not just the spectacular. Nice job.

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  31. Wonderful pictures – look like a great time!

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  32. My! Those protectors look awfully fierce – I can imagine intruders wondering if they were for real. Great to see you having a good time.

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  33. Such interesting photos throughout this trip!

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  34. The tombs look impressive in their simplicity, dignified. It’s strange how the tawdry the hotel seems in contrast.
    You’ve inspired me to take an interest in China, and I have learnt a few ideograms: there’s a great method called “Chineasy”, take a look here and here.

    In fact, do you know ted.com? If not, take some time to explore: it’s a great site, though admittedly a time-sink!

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  35. Did you eat at this fancy hotel? Love the fierce tomb protectors – can see that they graduated from King Fu School!

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  36. Yes, we ate dinner at this fancy hotel. We usually had dinner at any hotel we were staying at on the day of arrival. We had five local flights while in China.

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