Wednesday, August 30

Profile: Edward

Profile: Edward Giles

Beauty & Strength:

Edward is agreeably a one-of-a-kind soul, in a unique relationship with life and other people. Growing up in a violent and confusing environment, he has always embraced life as a stream of power feeding his spirit, so he can soar in new directions. The simplest of events take on profound significance as they interact with the constellation of pieces of wisdom, which he has gleaned from his grandfather, Islam, Sufism, Freemasonry, and the Baha'i Faith. He is most kind-mannered and gentle, with an amazing ability to converse at great length in abstract concepts, all the while keeping it grounded in reality (though the interlocutor may find it challenging to draw the correspondences).


Edward once showed up at my home to talk to my dad and me about spiritual truths, which he had been investigating. He soon became an integral part of my life, as we slowly reached across the distance between our worlds to gain mutual understanding. On the one hand, I always feel like an apprentice in his presence, as he shares his various thoughts, many of which are encapsulated in a few simple word plays. On the other hand, I feel like a light that has found something to shine on, as my own thoughts find validation in his attentive ears.


Edward has been serving homeless and poor people through a local church in Richmond, and he has been developing his relationships with family and friends, sharing his great wisdom (which unfortunately are lost on many misunderstanding or overwhelmed ears).


Edward will certainly continue to guide and inspire others with his great warm heart! It may even be within his lifetime that people learn to turn to his words for growth and comfort. He or someone else may also gather some of his compiled wisdom in writing.

Token Couplet:

On this soul's open oceans only odes
To you and life are heard - in hidden codes.

Sunday, August 27

The Breeze is Wafting


I love white tea! I've been hanging out with the lady at the tea shop down the street from me. She so sweet and welcoming. I've been learning lots about tea, and getting lots of free samples! She and her daughter are from Anhui province, just West of Shanghai, and they've been here for over 10 years!

One thing for which I am particularly grateful is the fact that none of my friends here complain about their lives or their jobs. While it's possible they keep some things bottled up, the main reason is that they are simply not inclined to complaining about things in general.

I also love that when a friend introduces me to one of her or his friends, this person immediately also assumes the role of a friend to me - in a "a friend of my friend is also my friend" kind of way.

Shanghainese is so much fun! I only know a few phrases, and I'm focusing on Mandarin, but it's a really cool sound, and it gets huge laughs whenever I attempt it.

A funny lesson in the 5th book in our NewBeat English series teaches the sentence, "The breeze is wafting." This is to follow "The sun is shining",

Monday, August 21


Zhuhai is such a very beautiful city! Unfortunately, I didn't really take any pictures. This is a view onto one of the many Zhuhai mountains, from my hotel room:

Guangdong food - yummie!

Touba (my school's director) and I were lucky enought to meet and have dinner with Rainbow's sister, who lives in Zhuhai (Rainbow is a NewBeat teacher).

Sandy and Adrian, from Macau - a beautiful family. This picture was taken by Julia, their daughter.

For the family consulting training course, we had a dinner together, where people took turns performing or speaking for the group - it was a delightful group indeed!

As I have mentioned, I was sick the whole 10 days in Zhuhai. I went to a doctor, who performed what is known as cupping, where they put suction cups at different strategic spot on my back to purge toxins from my body. I can't seem to get the picture to come up, so it's been divinely censored

Suzhou visit with friends

And now, to Suzhou! So cool to go to these beautiful cities back to back like this! The first picture I want to share is one of old people dancing, as they are wont to do at all time of the day. This is at around 7AM, and they were having a grand time!

As opposed to the cheap, do-it-yourself trip I had made with some friends to Zhu Jia Jiao, this time Tian Tian, Zhang Han and I took a tour bus, which means that we were steered around, going to a few select places, half of which are just touristy commercial spots aimed at getting us to buy various products for which the city is famous... like stone tea pots and silk products. This is a picture of our tour guide in action.

We visited a few beautiful gardens, which seem to make up a significant portion of the city's layout.

Throughout our visits, we had a few opportunities to watch and listen to beautiful young women playing traditional Chinese music on characteristic instruments:

My two companions took quite a few pictures themselves!

Haha! I got her:

I had several other pics, here, but having trouble loading - sorry! Maybe I'll start a Flickr page...

Hangzhou visit with Grandma

Yippie! Time for Hangzhou pictures. Although this is funny for starters, the next few pictures are from my favorite restaurant in Shanghai, which they also have in Hangzhou. They have the most delicious Thai food, and live performances (instruments, singing and dancing). Their outfits are great, and they have some many fruit foods and drinks!

The main feature of Hangzhou is West Lake:

Another big attration to me is the only place I know of where I love to shop! It's a night market with lots of arts, crafts and trinkets. The pagoda in the background is also a principle landmark:

I was very excited to go to the market for a second time:

A few clothes in my wardrobe are from this shop:

Next time I go, I want to buy a couple of this guy's amazing stone-carved tea pots!

This is a picture of our breakfast, which we picked up on the street market right outside the hotel:

Linyin Temple is the next main attraction after the lake:

This girl is just so cute!

I love this woman's dress, but I couldn't get a good shot of it!

There's a whole set of paths going up the mountain. Last time Javad and I walked to the top together. So many stairs!

Did I mention it was a beautiful, no-clouds sunny day?

This was a neat arrangement of rose paintings at a cafe we stopped out before leaving Hangzhou. It reminds me of our promotion for the production of The Rose Knight last summer. Posted by Picasa