Trip Start Jan 22, 2010
26Trip End Apr 30, 2010
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Where I stayed
We visited several temples on the first afternoons and we had an impromptu course in Buddhism courtesy of a local girl wishing to improve her English. We saw the gilded temple of Xiantong and the smiling Buddha of Guangren Si. Mum's legs were tired, so we sat on a rock where we were given some beads by an ancient grey-clad man.
A friendly couple also started talking to us and helped us order food at our hotel from Hell. The food was surprisingly good. We swapped phone numbers and arranged to meet Li Wen Li (Lily) and her husband Wong Tai Long the next day
They met us at the bottom of the cable car lift to the Dailuo Terrace. It was a peaceful ascent, giving excellent views over the village and the surrounding mountains. We took a look round the temple at the top and caught the cable car back down. There were actually sedan chairs available, but Mum declined. They were made from a metal framed deck-chair attached to a pair of wooden poles. I don't know that I would have fancied it either.
Lily and Wong treated us to lunch, then we went to the Pusa Temple, where everyone was gathering for a ceremony. We wedged ourselves into a spot on the concrete floor in amongst the crowd. It was immensely packed, cramped and uncomfortable.
The monks were lined up on either side of the temple. They chanted some prayers as the main head lama came in accompanied by drums, cymbals and a blast on a sea-shell. The elderly lady next to me showed me how to make a lotus flower pattern with my fingers, the way the monks were doing.
There was a fair amount of rice throwing into the crowd
After an hour, my bladder couldn't wait anymore and we crept out to try and find a loo. A friendly monk, called Suma, directed us to a WC. This was a communal affair involving us and a ten Chinese people squatting along a plank with holes in it. It was still an improvement on the one at the Hon Yon Hotel.
Finally, we took a wander round the Tayuan Temple with the large white Dagoba in it. I turned the prayer wheels that surrounded it: once for health, once for happiness and once for longevity. I like prayer wheels. There is something good about turning them. More religions should have them, I think.