May 15 2019

Crouching tigers

and hidden dragons. Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon 卧虎藏龙 was the name of 2000 movie, directed by Ang Lee and staring Chow Yun-fat (Zhou Yunfa), etc.

Crouch means squat 蹲 and I find many Chinese like to squat.

May 7 2019

Wanzhu Yuan in 2019

Ten Thousand Bamboo Garden 万竹园
Ji’nan, Shandong

Thanks to my aunt Yang Dongming who systematically photographed the Garden by courtyards. 谢谢小婶婶杨东明 特意帮我逐个花园照. 感恩

From the entrance, there is the rockery 假山 and the Donggao Spring 东高泉 to the left, which is one of the three springs. This post is mainly on the courtyards.

The Eastern Section 东套院 was the main living quarter.

Turning right from the entrance is the Eastern Section – the main section. The front building has converted into a memorial hall to house artist Li Kuchan’s work 李苦禅纪念馆 since 1986. And followed by (up north) Pomegranate Courtyard 石榴院, the Magnolia Courtyard 玉兰院 and at the back is the 绣楼/恒明楼, the actual place my great grandfather lived.

The Pomegranate Courtyard 石榴院

The Magnolia Courtyard 玉兰院 & the Hengming 恒明

This well was prized in the Magnolia Courtyard 玉兰院. According to Grandaunt Jingqiao, when they were little, they liked to use the water from this well to wash their hair because it made their hair particularly smooth and shiny.

听巧姑说: 他们小时候用这个井水洗头, 特别顺滑.

The Western Section 西套院 of living quarter. Passing by the rockery to the right, the little pathway leads to the family quarter. It has Apricot Courtyard 杏院, Wangshui Spring 望水泉, Begonia Courtyard 海棠院, Aihe (Lotus) 爱荷亭, Papaya Courtyard 木瓜院.

Apricot Courtyard 杏院

Begonia Courtyard 海棠院

Apr 2 2019

Ji’nan in 2019

After anther round of fundraising, our family’s cemetery was updated. Many relatives gathered there shortly before the Tomb Sweeping Day 清明节, to pay respect to our ancestors.

Afterward, they visited Wanzhu Yuan again. The top and lower left photos were taken on Marcy 17, 2016.


The Jingjue Temple is still closed.



Mar 19 2019

What’s your thought on this?

This is an old photo I took nearly three years ago. It was a residential building. The Close button is visibly used than the Open.

Any thought on this?

Nov 26 2018

Jade Belt Bridge & Marble Boat

Stephan Loewentheil of Brooklyn is a rare book/photo collector who’s a lot of 19th century photos of China. They’re having one right now, 120 original photos at Qinghua University, till March 2019.

These photos are taken at Summer Palace by Thomas Child who in May 1870,”was hired by the Imperial Maritime Customs Service to be a gas engineer in Peking (Beijing). The 29-year-old Englishman left behind his wife and three children to become one of roughly 100 foreigners living in the late Qing dynasty’s capital, taking his camera along with him. Over the course of the next 20 years, he took some 200 photographs, capturing the earliest comprehensive catalog of the customs, architecture, and people during China’s last dynasty. ”

This is an early photograph of Jade Belt Bridge, or Moon Bridge, LOCated on the grounds of the Summer Palace in Beijing on the western shore of Kunming Lake. The elegant high arch bridge is a traditional Chinese design. The arch was constructed high enough to allow passage of the Emperor’s dragon boat. On special occasions the Emperor and Empress travelled on Kunming Lake passing under this bridge.”

Child took this photograph of the Marble Boat, or the Boat of Purity and Ease, in the 1870s, after it suffered damage from the Second Opium War. Child noted: “At one time there was a summer house on it, but it has entirely disappeared.” The base of the boat is made of solid stone. It originally supported a traditional Chinese wooden pavilion that was burned down during the conflict in 1860. The pavilion was rebuilt in 1893, decades after this photograph was taken.”

The following two are taken by Qin Qiang on 2018.11.21


Btw, some the photos are at LOC – Library of Congress in DC. If you visit their site recently, you’ll see the Statement to commemorate the 13th Librarian, Dr. James Billington who passed away on November 21, 2018. He’d been with the LOC for 28 years and raised half a billion dollars in private support – he must be a charmer as well as an able administrator. The statement credited him with

  • doubled the size of the Library’s traditional analog collections, from 85.5 million items in 1987 to more than 160 million items
  • acquired the only copy of the 1507 Waldseemüller world map (“America’s birth certificate”) in 2003
  • reconstructed Thomas Jefferson’s original library
  • obtained a complete copy of Lafayette’s previously inaccessible papers from the Lafayette family’s castle at LaGrange, France
  • advocated for an underground connection between the Library and the U.S. Capitol Visitors Center

RIP Dr. and thank you!

Nov 11 2018

Beijing 北京

No set schedule but many sites are on my mind.

Oct 12 2018

Ming tombs 十三陵

The compound has 13 Ming (1368-1644) emperors’ mausoleums, locates in Changping, 26 miles northwest from the center of Beijing. We call it shisan ling, thirteen tombs. The photos of the statues are on the Sacred Way leading up to Changling 长陵, the mausoleum of the 3rd emperor Yongle (永乐, 1360-1424; r. 1402-24). The color photos are taken on 2018.10.10 by my high school classmates Xu Tong and Tang Zheng – thanks sweeties. The black and white, first two are from Presbyterian Archives Research Centre, in 1911. #79736



The following three black and white are from China marine, undated. Not quite sure of the first and the third.




The 13 mausoleums are:

  1. Chang Ling Mausoleum 长陵
  2. Xian Ling Mausoleum
  3. Jing Ling Mausoleum
  4. Yu Ling Mausoleum
  5. Mao Ling Mausoleum
  6. Tai Ling Mausoleum
  7. Kang Ling Mausoleum
  8. Yong Ling Mausoleum
  9. Zhao Ling Mausoleum
  10. Qing Ling Mausoleum
  11. Ding Ling Mausoleum 定陵
  12. De Ling Mausoleum
  13. Si Ling Mausoleum

Jun 15 2018

China 2018

I’ve 8 hours layover in Hong Kong, am able to visit the Maritime Museum on Pier 8 in the Central. Got to visit many sites but also missed a few.

Apr 22 2018

Huoshan huangya 霍山黄芽

According to the can, this Anhui green tea can trace back to Tang Dynasty (years 618 to 907). It grows on Dabie Mountain (大别山) with an elevation of 1,774 meters in the western part of Anhui province. HuoShan is part of Babie Mountain. The tea tastes yummy,


Apr 22 2018

Liu’an Guapian 六安瓜片

A great green tea, my dear friend brought from Beijing to Shanghai.