Asian Wonders #13 Old Canton/ Guangzhou in Guangdong Provence from the Huangpu Port

Meaningful dragon # six of nine:

First and foremost, I would like to thank a VERY special company for allowing us 6 days of private in depth touring of our ports and surrounding cities.  The company I highly recommend is China Odyssey Tours at:

www.ChinaOdysseyTours.com and ask for Yeliz because she is a very special agent!  We were happy with each and every tour guide, hotel and driver. We learned first hand about our specified tour for the day and shared experiences with the people living in our city stops.   THANK YOU you for all of our stress free learning and sharing experiences.

Today we had a bit of culture shock. There we were in the heart of Vietnam yesterday, a, developing, country, not there yet and will wait many, many years to get anything much done, into a country developed and straining to develop even more.  The city is full, chocked full of beautiful skyscrapers which are office buildings. Apartment buildings, a lovely beautifully designed Opera house and across from that a huge gorgeous stadium.  It goes on and on…our guide told us that China develops a little each year, a moderate amount every three years and a lot every five years.  Good job, China.

We visited Dr. Sun Yat-sen Memorial Hall, which is a Chinese style building and was sponsored by Chinese government to commemorate Dr. Sun Yat-sen, the great forerunner of the Chinese revolution.  The hall once had 4,000 seats and when it was rebuilt because of fire, they only put in 3,000 seats.  When asked why there are fewer seats, the comment was made that the Chinese were getting too fat, so they cut the seats so they would lose weight. Good answer, but probably due to new architectural plans. The sound used to have an echo but now they have fixed the sound enjoying concerts and large venues there in the hall.

Plaque in Dr. Sun Yat-sen’s calligraphy in which he states:

“The world belongs to the public”

Many Chinese people envy the self-confidence they think the American’s possess. They feel that what they are doing is always not quit good enough and envy being able to feel that one is doing well. I did not know the way I always felt was a Chinese way of thinking. It took a long time to think of myself as doing well, but I am there more often than just once in a while.  When you travel you really do not get into the minds set of the people and their way of living. You barely scratch the surface and besides, it changes from district to district as it does everywhere from place to place. You can’t know and understand what the people you are visiting are all about and truly understand because their ways of thinking are so complex.  Maybe and hopefully you slice a sliver off to take home and cherish. What you do learn when traveling is a lot about yourself. Now that is the truth!!

Your bathroom awaits madam. You know, you stand spread eagle and squat. There is nothing to it.  BYOTP (bring your own toilet paper) and put it into the basket along side the squatter.

The government in China does govern.  We were told that if you want to have a baby you do have to petition for permission, especially if you have moved from your place of birth    (to insure the child wil have a place in school)or maybe it is for everyone wanting to have a baby. The rule still holds that you can only have one.  But if you and your husband are only children, you can have two. Here is a photo taken with the lucky mother’s permission. She is allowed to have two or three or as many as come, but only within the parameters of the one pregnancy.

Our next stop was The Chen Family Temple and also known as Guangdong Folk Art Museum. It used to be the study house of the Chen Family in the 1890’s and also happens to be beautifully decorated ancient architecture.

We also enjoyed he demonstrations of folk art being made on the premises.

Two gentlemen dressed in ancient clothing posing at the Folk Art Museum.

Paper cutting, beautiful!

Some carved ivory caught our eye!

The carved balls are a piece to insure future generations. I bought one for our family, but not out of ivory, out of sandalwood. Have you ever had the sensual pleasure of smelling freshly carved sandalwood?  It is hypnotic. I put the balls in my jacket pocket and by the end of the afternoon, I was in a mellow, comfortable state of mind. I think I am a little allergic to long-term association with freshly carved sandalwood because my nose got stuffy and started to run. After distancing from the smell the nose cleared up. Still, the smell is just a great treat.

Ivory Generation balls:

Time to say good-bye to Canton and get ready to make our way to Hong Kong and the end of our journey.  Don’t stop reading. I have several more Travelblogs coming your way.

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