Yesterday morning we met Luo Lidong at the front gate of the college along with Harry and Lisa (American names), two Chinese students. Harry is an art major in photograph and Lisa is a preliminary education major. Both students are in the running for coming to Bluefield College next fall as non-English majors. Someone drove us in a minivan to the Purple Mountain where we saw Dr. Sun YatSen’s mausoleum set high upon the mountain. He started a revolution on 1911 that overthrew the 2000 year reign of emperors that moved China into the modern age. Unfortunately he died of cancer 14 years later. It was very crowded but we did get there right when they opened the gates. Afterwards we walked to the first Ming emperor’s tomb and museum. They had many artifacts from the site there and that was fascinating. We then took a leisurely stroll down the mountain out of the park and ate at a KFC. Yes KFC, fried chicken and French fries just like home, ha!
After lunch we took a short bus trip to the Nanjing Museum . We saw jade work over 4500 years ago, silk work from the Ming dynasty, ceramics from the Ming and Qing dynasties, bronze work, and three exhibits with modern Chinese art. One man’s work was a slight modernization of traditional Chinese painting, another was more traditional Chinese painting, and another was something you will most likely never see. It was paintings created with thread, very similar to embroidery but a much finer thread. It was amazing. One piece that took three years to complete was at least 20 feet long and 5 feet high of a traditional Chinese landscape. By then we were pretty tired and took two buses back to campus arriving around 3:30.
At 5:00 some of our new Chinese friends came over to my apartment to cook the three of us a traditional Chinese dinner. We had a blast. The food was great and afterwards they started Karaoke from their IPods. We laughed until we cried.