Quanzhou – A Spiritual Quest
We all met up at the school first thing on Monday morning with wonderful stories to tell from the weekend that included basketball, banquets, butchers, and black and white cats! Each of the students went their own way on Saturday while all the girls and their host families met up with Nancy and Adam at the Ancient City of Huian on Sunday morning for a stroll among the granite monuments, pristine beach, and China’s oldest stone city. Come Monday morning after the flag raising ceremony, students were ready to test their skills at lantern making, calligraphy, a traditional Chinese psychology class, and an expedition to the Kaiyuan Temple, Fujian province’s largest Buddhist temple, followed by a visit to a Taoist temple where we saw locals praying, offering incense and learned of how special paper money for their ancestors to spend in the afterlife were burned. We saw the statue of Mazu, Goddess of the sea, and Jason and Rainy, our guides, were peppered with questions. After, it was off to snack on Fruit Soup (imagine a cold sweet broth with noodles, strawberries, dragon-fruit, & taro… yum) before returning to school and the promise of home cooked meals in the company of some of Quanzhou’s most generous families. Tomorrow we will participate in a facial makeup class, kung fu class, and visit a maritime museum, an Islamic mosque, as well as a Shaolin temple!