Being Muir in China again

Grandpa's book of poems
Grandpa’s book of poems
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Good evening! Actually, it is more like good night because it is 11:34 PM right now. I just washed my hair (bad, bad idea when it’s so late). Today was pretty chill (not too much went on and it did rain for the 2nd time in Nanjing so it was pretty chilly); we went to see my grandparents again and along the way, we stopped by Xinjiekou again. We took a peek into some big chain-store makeup shops (Korean brands) like Inisfree and Étude House. Normally, we would not buy stuff like this, but these makeup products are designed for Asian features so we couldn’t resist getting our hands on some of them.
My grandfather took out his book of poems again and this time, even a bunch of published books with his poems printed in them! I really enjoy listening to my grandfather’s deep Tai Xing accented reciting tone. I can decipher some of the words but a lot of the poems are hard to understand completely. My grandmother sliced some Fuji apples again but since I am allergic to these type of apples, I didn’t eat them. My sister and I also looked at old photo albums to hunt for pictures of our dad when he was young. I was so surprised to find that my dad had single eyelids back then, because he just looked so different compared to now. We also saw many pictures of my grandfather when he was studying abroad in St. Petersburg in Russia for many years– everybody agreed that he looked very handsome, which I attest to as well. I found many black and white pictures of my well-respected great grandfather and great grandmother. I wish I could have met them and talked to them…(they lived partly in the Qing dynasty!). I am just very sad and angry that their old siheyuan (square courthouse surrounded by walls) where they lived in was taken away without notice, demolished and replaced with a shopping mall. Why is money and progression so important??
Anyways, as promised, here is an account of my trip to Zhong San Lin (“Zhong San” being “Sun Zhong San” and “Lin” being “forest”) and the Ming tombs of 1300-1400s. Sun Zhong San was completely covered with trees. Thank goodness I wore long pants (which I noticed matched the color scheme of the park) and received no mosquito bites. Contrary to what many people may think, China has lots and lots of trees and lush greenery. Even in cities, there are lots of trees planted on the streets. The climb up the white stone stairs was so much shorter and easier than I had remembered. When we got to the top, the view was breathtaking! There was a low hanging fog sitting on top of all the shades of greenery as far as my eyes can see. I tried to take panoramas but as I look back at them, they do not quite capture the magnificence of what I had experienced.

Afterwards, we went to the nearby Ming Tombs. There was not actually any tombs there (I am pretty sure) but lots of memorials covered with aging vines and ferns, a beautiful path full of swaying trees and pairs of animal statues as “guards”, and my favorite, the Mei hua san (literally, Plum blossom hill. I find that translating Chinese names into English causes it to lose its meaning and intended connotation for some reason). This “hill” is my favorite even though summer is not the season for plum blossoms because it is so secluded and desolated, and because the trees are low and black, yellow, and white butterflies still flutter about the pink and orange Black eyed Susans. I cannot fathom how beautiful the place would be when Spring is here…
Looking back at my old posts, I realize that I made so many typos (ex. Tigger odor? I meant, trigger odor). It is just so hard to edit my posts and position my pictures on my iPod. Sometimes glitches, jumps of the cursor, or abject connection to the Internet really makes me angry, and probably bothers you all as well… Please bear with me!

Alright, time for sleep! It is almost 1am…

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