Tiger Leaping Gorge
FYI, the water level is low till June July August, so the gorge rapids are much less impressive, but so are the tourist numbers. I went in April and hiked the middle gorge down alone.
Guizhou in photos
@photobug Late reply, but for the record, I try to avoid using photoshop as much as possible. I usually only do curves in Lightroom. So to answer your question: no. I dont de-focus in photoshop at all.
Tamed Youth: 2013 Sixth Chengdu Biennale
Next Biennale should be in 2015, but not necessarily at the exhibition center. There are events at the exhibition center all the time usually fares for real estate, consumer goods (wine, cars, food..), jobs and the likes. Probably the more interesting event on the cultural side are the cosplay and manga conventions: Comiday, which is hold twice a year or so.
RE: Zebra postponement, those "security issues" relate to them being massively overcharged for the security guards. It helps to maintain friendly relationships with the locals...also I'm not sure if where the info about the Xiong Mao stage came from but there was no chance of that happening.
Basi de Hen! crossing the line
Line up for the pastries 还可以！but roast tender bunny and doughy white flour and slaughtered pig meat laced with hormones and antibiotics, well no thanks!That is good for the mindless masses as they reply to a weixin friend on their 手机！
April 16, 2014
Zebra & Strawberry Festival Chengdu 2014 Sneak Preview
zebra has been "postponed", the officially given reason was safety in Southwest China in the context of the kunming terror attack March 1st. I am not able to draw a connection between both, but higher echolons seem to have incredible oversight. i hope they postpone strawberry because of mh370.
The classes are in small groups or one-to-one. Students are 25-40 years old, Chinese and foreigners, some girls also, from beginners to advanced. Students usually come for 2 hours lessons, while a few students live in the school (like those students coming to China in summer to learn kungfu full time). Sifu Li Quan is very flexible with schedule: I often came to train at 8pm after work!
The school isn't too far from the city center of Chengdu. I was going there with bicycle, a good warm up. Other students take bus or taxi.
The master and the other students feel like a family, this is a very friendly atmosphere, with open-air training in green setting (inside when bad weather). Very different from doing sport at the gym: no smell of old sweat and mold, no club music, no salesmen pushing for 2 years subscription, and no boring workout on complicated machines that make you feel stiff like Robocop after a few months!
Li Quan speaks good English, and he's very keen to pass on his knowledge.
His descriptions are much more detailed than what I experienced in France. His own movements can be incredibly fast, controlled and powerful!
He teaches a 'nan quan' (kung fu style from southern China). This is focused on practical movements (no acrobatics!) for self-defense and attack, with an emphasis on close range combat, and that you can practice at every age.
As a pure beginner, my training focused on building a strong foundation: rope-jumping routines, stretching, several kinds of basic stances, footworks, punches, blocks & kicks (in pairs, alone, or with the wooden dummy), drills to improve speed, a bit of strength training, then balance training and even QiGong relaxation and breathing exercises, as well as general concepts (centerline, controlled tension/relaxation of muscles, etc).
All of which I should be able to train further by myself, or build further on when I continue kungfu with other masters. (I am now living Chengdu). These few months training have been like a 'body reboot' for me, I feel better in my body than ever before! (I'm 37).
Even for those not into martial arts, I recommend to just come for a free lesson in a week-end (book first: www.kungfu-family.com ; email@example.com ), make some cool pictures doing kungfu like in movies, and spend the rest of the day in the area. It´s nice and green and full of restaurants. And maybe you fall in love with kunfu!