This weekend we made another new friend-Yinsheng Pu who works for Absolutechina.com and was introduced to us by Flora, who is a friend of our Indian friend Aadil. I think he looks a bit like a Chinese version of Erez Tal.
We met up with him in Hangzhou and he asked us what we would like to do and we said to go to Lingyin Temple,(the Soul’s Retreat) one of the oldest Buddhist temples in Hangzhou-about 1,500 years old- and maybe in China. IT is still an active temple and I think a rich one. There were loads of people there to offer fruits to the Buddhas and to pray.The Temple is set in a lovely scenic area with trees and mountain trails, known as Peak Flown from Afar. All around the temple there are stone buddhas carved into the mountainside and then the temple complex itself is full of gold covered buddhas in various poses,surrounded by huge statues of fearsome warriors. Unfortunately photography is not allowed inside the temple structures so you will have to surf the web to find pictures of those statues. We photographed only the exterior.
After a lovely morning at the temple Yinsheng took us to a Chinese fast food place (our favourite lunch) and then kindly accompanied us to the number 21 bus stop so we could get the bus back to Lin’an.
We sincerely hope we get together with him again very soon.
Today we invited a colleague of Danny’s called Mark (don’t know his Chinese name) to have afternoon tea and cakes with us. He was going to come with his girlfriend, a graduate student from Edinburgh University but she unfortunately couldn’t come in the end. We had a lovely afternoon with him chatting about all kinds of things (and his visit spurred us to clean our apartment at last) and then went to eat supper together at the new restaurant on campus. We talked about loads of things-Israel,China,education,the students etc and it was very pleasant. But,as I said on Facebook,China is making me too fat!