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Kunming's fall colors


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Anther wonderful glimpse into the wonderful place Kunming and indeed China is. Thanks for your efforts.


8 hours ago, abcdefg said:

I didn't see any "big catch" action, in fact, I didn't witness even a nibble


I am not an angler but those that are that I know tell me its not just catching the fish, its sitting in lovely surroundings listening to the sounds of the wildlife and looking at the wonderful natural things around you. In fact any fish my friends catch go back and for them it seems like just a good excuse to escape the "wife and kids" or those DIY jobs that are waiting.

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I used to do a bit of water calligraphy myself (I'll have to see if I can find some pictures of my 'work') and the understanding part you describe was always stressful.  I wish I could do some now with my increased knowledge of Classical Chinese.  To my shame, I even remember someone having to explain the meaning of 君 to me.


I once had a conversation with someone doing some water calligraphy and his advice was that it didn't matter if you didn't understand it, you just find a style you like, buy a 字帖 and then write it out fifty times.  By the end, you would have amazing calligraphy skills and you would have absorbed the meaning.  I thought this was actually quite a good illustration of the foundations of Chinese educational philosophy.  It's more of an ability precedes understanding system, rather than the typical Western understanding precedes ability. 


But that's a conversation for another day.

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How lovely! Thanks for inviting us to share your walk, I really enjoyed it. Beam me up, abcdefg!


10 hours ago, abcdefg said:

"Do you remember when Liu Bei 刘备 met with Zhuge Liang 诸葛亮 ...


I would have remembered, you'll have to watch the TV series (with subtitles by Jiang Hu), you'll come to love the whole story.

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Just had a quick look for some photos of my previous experience with "floor-water-calligraphy" and found these:


So, I used to go to the main square in the evening and there was this old guy (everyone called him 马老师) and, if you had a pen, you could stand next to him and copy what he was writing.




Here you can see my efforts.  Sometimes at the end of a section he would walk back through and point out which characters were written particularly well.




As a place for middle-aged (and upwards) people to gather in the evening, it would become quite busy and the calligraphy writing would attract a bit of a crowd.  Luckily, as people's attention was focused mainly on the writing rather than those doing it, I would go unnoticed.  Although we would occasionally have cause to have a bit of a debate about something or other.




The whole square was busy with every conceivable activity, from calligraphy to dancing, to skipping, to spinning tops etc.


I once went through at 7am on a Sunday morning and found this...




(I don't have much experience posting photos.  Is there a way to stop it rotating the second one when you enlarge it?)

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22 hours ago, somethingfunny said:

So, I used to go to the main square in the evening and there was this old guy (everyone called him 马老师) and, if you had a pen, you could stand next to him and copy what he was writing.


Was that Beijing?


Looks like fun! I was worried that it might be very intimidating, only suitable for accomplished calligraphers and that my childlike scribbling would painfully embarrass me. But maybe not so bad; I'll try it next time. Might provide a stimulus for investing the effort to learn to write better. 


Thanks for posting these! I saw lots of water calligraphy when I lived in Harbin one summer. Teams with matching jackets would compete on the weekend. It would turn into a jolly affair, 很热闹。

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23 hours ago, somethingfunny said:

I don't have much experience posting photos.  Is there a way to stop it rotating the second one when you enlarge it?)


Posting photos is not intuitive with the current software. Here's how I do it.


After you attach the first photo to your post, double click it and select size and location. If you plan to have two photos side by side, to keep the page from becoming too narrow and vertical, size it 300, assign it to the left side of the page, keeping the original "aspect ratio." Place the second photo beside it, to the right, same size, but click its location/alignment as "none." This lets it stay beside the first one without jockeying for position.


I try to edit the images I wish to upload such that they are smaller than 100 kb. Otherwise they are too large to load smoothly and reasonably fast; they bog the page down for members using a slow internet connection.

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It was in Shenyang, so in the direction of Harbin.  I'd like to have seen the teams with jackets - sounds like a lot of fun.  Occasionally some people would turn up and they'd do mental calligraphy stuff, like writing a really complicated character in 'bubble' writing without taking the pen off the ground.  One of them had a special pen he'd made from a Coca-Cola bottle which would release water to the 'nib', rather than having to dip it in a bucket like us mortals.


I went pretty much every evening for an entire summer so I got quite handy by the end.  Importantly though, it exposed me to some Classical Chinese and lots of traditional form characters.  In fact, I found that without really realizing it, I could easily recognise most common traditional characters.


(p.s. Taiwan again?  You are a lucky man.) 

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