Christmas/Daomas, Wudang Weather, New Site

A tree from the woodland and balloons from Britain: Christmas time!

Hello one and all, and a joyful Christmas to you!

The weather has been changeable of late, with snow last Wednesday…

So pretty! More of this, please.
Morning walk in wintry Wudang
Yes, our Taoist master is sporting a rainbow umbrella

…and clear, sunny skies on Sunday:

View from Golden Heavenly Summit: top of the world at 1,600m

Mostly, we have been enveloped in a thick, humid fog. It can be inconvenient, but it does make for some beautiful pictures.

Rolling mist
A path to the highest Wudang tea plantations
Another morning walk

On 24 December, Master Gu took us on a challenging hike up up up to a little-known site where centuries-old tributes to Lao Tzu have been hewn out of unforgiving rock face.

There, I took this state portrait picture of Master Gu in front of the statue of Lao Tzu:

No stranger to cameras, the master strikes a masterly pose

At night, we celebrated a very British Christmas Eve here, thanks to Father Kurtmas, who had brought an extra suitcase filled to the brim with Christmassy goodies just to make this happen. Potatoes, vegetables, balls of stuffing, cranberry sauce, duck and chopsticks—it was a cross-cultural Christmas, after all; we dubbed it “Taomas”. Even Christmas crackers and a tree with lots of presents for everyone! We dined and drank Chinese wine (12%, tastes like a tangy lemonade) and recorded a special Christmas video with all of us singing a hilarious version of ‘Jingle Bells’ that Kurt had written for the occasion. Will post this later.

Lovely presents and Christmas/Taomas wishes

Understandably, I have taken today off. Farewells to Bouke, who has become a dear friend, and his first-girlfriend-now-fiancée Iris (Bouke proposed to Iris here, just the other day!). May your travels be filled with both the glorious and the mundane, the up and the down, the fortuitous and the challenging. I will miss you and think of you often!

So, yes, today, rest.

Looks almost real… On a bookshelf at the nearby hotel where some of us sometimes go for some quiet cups of tea

Lastly, a cold, wet flute from a rainy mountainside for you, to extend my nonetheless warmest well-wishes:

Oh, and very lastly, a brief site announcement:

You may have noticed A Tram has a somewhat new layout and no longer requires a login. This means you can, if you wish, delete the account; I am now using and hosting the blog elsewhere. To make sure you receive updates, subscribe at the bottom of a post. Thank you very much for following the tram on its flight!

5 comments On Christmas/Daomas, Wudang Weather, New Site

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    Merry Xmas brother

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    Merry Christmas, dear son! Lots of love and hugs

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    Hanneke Gloudemans-Andringa

    Happy holidays dear friend! Warm wishes from Holland.

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    Eli, ook voor jou een vrolijk kerstmis, Han

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    Annie en René van Dantzig

    Lieve neef, voor jou onze hartelijke kerstgroeten uit dat kleine bekende landje ver weg. Wij hopen dat je in dat voor ons verre onmetelijke China kunt genieten van al het goede nieuwe in je omgeving. Wij genieten mee via je blog!
    We houden het hier maar op de Nederlandse taal, om die nog een beetje levend voor je te houden … al zal dat juist voor jou eigenlijk niet nodig zijn.
    Liefs van Annie en René

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