If we were having coffee, I would tell you good morning and that I’ve had another wonderful week in China. However, believe it or not, I’ve begun counting down – 5 weeks and counting – until I once again get on a plane and venture across the Pacific back home. It’s a little odd calling the U.S. home instead of China, where I’m originally from, my mom had pointed out in a phone conversation once and it had made me confused ever since.
Where is home, exactly? Hmm…
Anyway, I’ve had a wonderful week. Starting off, I went to another feast. This feast was held in a hotel and it was for my cousin’s wedding. We arrived early and took lots of pictures on the platform before heading in to be seated.
Feeling bored, I ventured into the large room where the wedding would be taking place and took a peek around. It was quite different from what I’ve had in mind because for some reason, I’ve always pictured Chinese weddings to be a little bit more traditional – perhaps a little bit redder – and this looks westernized. Maybe Chinese weddings have evolved over the years.
We watched the wedding from a TV in the room they’ve placed us. The bride wore a beautiful white strapless dress with large fat golden bracelets and a necklace with more fat golden bracelets stringed together. Honestly, the bride’s get-up looked heavy. Meanwhile, the groom wore a shiny black tuxedo. Lucky groom don’t have to carry all the gold around. My aunt assured me, however, that although the bracelets were indeed made from real gold, it’s hollow inside. That’s good to know.
The wedding featured some great food as well as nice-looking gift bags.
That was a long day, we left at 9 am and didn’t return until almost mid-night but it was fun-filled.
If we were having coffee, I would tell you the weather had been terrible. It’s been misting, gloomy, and the city is starting to reek of that stink. I can’t describe it and I don’t want to breathe it.
If we were having coffee, I would tell you I went hiking this week with my grandma and cousin. This was two days after his visit to the psychiatrist for his mild case of depression, insomnia, and anxiety. He seemed so much happier that day and was even conversing with our grandma. I’m glad for that and hope his progress continues.
If we were having coffee, I would tell you we went to another temple yesterday. This time, it was purely to worship our ancestors and love ones. The temple was on top of the mountains. It was very foggy and misty yesterday and by the time I was standing at the temple, I felt like I was engulfed in fog. I mean, can you spot the reservoir below?
After climbing a set of stairs, I began to cough. It was the smoke that made me cough. Tens if not hundreds of incense sticks ranging from thick to thin were burning nearby and a thick trail of smoke was quickly ascending. Several minutes later, I followed my aunts and climbed another set of stairs. I followed them into the temple and they began placing apples and clementines on the altar while my uncle placed his hands together and bowed several times at the statue.
I felt so awkward standing there. I didn’t know what to do. I felt like I was in a church worshiping the wrong person. So in the end, I stared at the wall full of golden plaques with the names of our departed relatives, bowed my head, and gave a moment of silence. Then I headed out the temple.
For some reason, after I left the temple, I wanted to cry. Maybe it was awkwardness or maybe it was the thought of the names on the golden plaques have all been dearly departed from this world. I hope I won’t feel this awkward when I visit my dad’s grave next month.
Finally, if we were having coffee, I would tell you I am excited because I am going on a road trip. I am going to a place known as the Grand Canyon of China. I am heading there via high-speed train. So excited. I’ve never ridden a high-speed train before. It’s a four-day trip and I will be back on Friday. I will have a post containing more details.