Kunming

You know what they say about the best laid plans… Well I was expecting to be able to post some drawings of the Stone Forest, an amazing landscape of limestone rocks that we visited yesterday, but it started to rain just as we got to the stones and drawing proved impossible. Of course by the time we got back to Kunming the rain had stopped. As compensation we bought some tea, because tea plants (Camelia sinensis) are native to this area. So here is my consolation cup of chrysanthemum tea.

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Thankfully the weather was much better today as we visited the Western Hills area of the city to climb up to the Dragon Gate, a Daoist shrine on the side of a mountain overlooking the city. Here is my sketch of the gate in its pristine state (I’m considering putting some colour on it). The character on the left is ‘gate’ and that on the right is ‘dragon’. You may notice a ball shape on the underside of the lintel. It is traditional for students about to sit their exams to climb the mountain and touch the stone.

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So good luck to you all and we’ll settle for the weather to be kinder when we visit the ancient Buddhist sculptures at Beishan.

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