Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Chinese New Year

 We've just passed Chinese New Year. In Hong Kong, where my book is being printed, the celebrations last all week and the printing press closes down. I like to imagine that the ink is drying on the printed insides of the books right now.
My Tai Chi teacher, Master Khoo, is very community minded, and brings out the big dragons to prance in procession for Chinese New Year
 He said I could take his photo and post it on my blog. There's lots of balancing needed when doing Tai Chi, and we have to practise moving our weight from one leg to the other before going into a new sequence. I'm still trying to master this kick.
 I feel quite a novice still, but received a big boost when I went for my first class of the year. Master Khoo had my graduation gift all wrapped and ready, to mark my first whole year of Tai Chi. Because I was away at the beach, I missed the big dinner and graduation that he held in December for all his pupils, most of whom have been coming to his classes for many years.
Inside the wrapping was this old man doing 'Wave Hands Like Clouds'.
'Every year you will receive another statue,' said Master Khoo, 'and after ten years you will have the whole set.'
Whew! That's certainly something to aim for. The Chinese are great on longevity, and not the least bit put off by those students who begin in later life. For them, Tai Chi never ends.
The heron, who practises her balancing acts in front of me, when I do my Tai Chi by the sea, would agree. Seeking the still point is an everlasting quest.

13 comments:

Diana Drent said...

Practising tai chi looks to me very difficult.

You must be very agile.

juliet said...

Hi Diana, it comes with practice, and is soothing to do. Thank you.

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

Hi Juliet - it is relaxing isn't it .. even though I do Qigong ... the best thing is it expands everything without over-stretching ...

How lovely that you all have a get together and that you get little ceramic examples of the move .. clever idea.

Also you do yours at the beach as often as possible - when I go down to the centre we look out over the Channel ... and across the Bay from Beachy Head to Hastings ... gorgeous expanse of water ..

Cheers Hilary

juliet said...

*Hilary, nice to think of you doing your Qigong over the other side of the world. We actually do both, and the teacher includes some Qigong each time. How marvellous for you to look out over the Channel - I've actually sailed there - used to spend quite a bit of time in the south of England.
Thank you.

Hotly Spiced said...

I don't think I could ever be good at Tai Chi. Looking forward to hearing your book has arrived from HK xx

Penny O'Neill said...

Wonderful, Juliet
I have been busy taking care of my sister and thought I should try commenting using my phone.
We celebrated the Cinese New Year last week.at Garden Club. It was delightful in every way! I love your statue. Here is to getting all ten.

juliet said...

* Charlie, I'm looking forward to it too! Have just approved the cover, which gets printed next. Then packing into boxes and a boat trip.

* Penny, how clever of you to do this by phone! I do hope your sister is recovering well. Chinese New Year is always such a colourful festival.

Thank you Charlie and Penny, good to see you.

Vicki Lane said...

I like to think of you doing Tai Chi while the heron imitates you...

juliet said...

* Sometimes I wonder who is imitating who! Thanks Vicki.

Lynley said...

The Year of the snake for the Chinese this year. Do we shed our skins as we grow during the year I wonder?

I love the gentleness in your statue.

It is great weather at the moment for Tai Chi outdoors.

The book is getting closer to you. How exciting!

juliet said...

* Lynley, yes it's all good and exciting: weather, book, and keeping in balance.
Thank you.

Anne Ruffell said...

How lovely that the book is drying as I write and that you are awaiting the cover - so am I, with great excitement! Chinese New Year is a great way to celebrate another wonderful achievement of yours. What a lovely man your Tai Chi teacher is to mark your first year with such an appropriate gift. 9 more to come! I haven't attempted Tai Chi but this morning did my own yoga practice and I've had an excellent day, not without frustrations (printer playing up when I am doing exhibition work) but I am sure it is the calmness that comes with yoga that has let me overcome it and achieve my own success with two new pictures of our local woods last autumn.

juliet said...

* Anne, it's exciting to be awaiting the cover, I agree! How wonderful that you have the yoga to bring you to a calm centre. Do hope the printer behaves itself and your pictures come out beautifully.
Thank you for visiting.