Highlights of Alex & Megan's Family China Tour 2009
Tour Date: 17th July - 29th July 2009
We went through the entrance of the amazing Shaolin Temple and I couldn't believe my eyes!
We had a look around; I had my photo taken with Sifu (David Richardson) at the statue of the famous Monk Bodidarma. I walked over to a lovely shrine and made an offering to the golden Buddha's. I picked up three incense sticks and put them in the sand. Si-Gung (Paul Burkinshaw) managed to get us into the original training hall where the Shaolin monks trained many years ago. The training hall was not open to the general public and we felt really privileged.
It was amazing to see the indentations on the floor of the hall caused by the repeated stamping of the monks feet over hundreds of years. We had our photograph taken in the hall. This will be a treasured memento of our visit to the breathtaking Shaolin Temple.
Written by Alexander Currie
After visiting the Shaolin Temple we decided to climb up to Bodhidarmas cave. We set off and it was so hot and humid we felt exhausted before we started. We saw a little truck and arranged for us to get a lift part way up.
We met Si Guung Paul,Louise and Master John Holden. It was really tiring climbing up the steep steps, it was difficult to get your breath. Rebecca and Alexander had lots of energy and ran up. We stopped at one of the little stalls and I bought a beautiful bracelet and we had a drink. We climbed and climbed for what seemed an eternity.
We finally reached the cave it was beautiful the statue of Bodhidarma had lovely flowers on it. It was incredible to think he spent nine years there. We took lots of wonderful photographs of this amazing place. We then carried on up the steep steps and saw Dan, Alex and Kev on their way down they had walked the whole way up and said it was all right. We finally reached the top and took a few minutes to get our breath. Then we lookeed down and realised why we'd lost our breath. We had climbed a great height; scary to think the monks run up there every day and then come back down on their hands and feet.
There was a gigantic statue of Bodhidarma,which was beautiful, it was enormous. We lit some incense and made a contribution. We then took some pictures by the statue and made our way back down.
As we made our way back down we met Chris and Jack, we reassured them that they didn't have too far to go and they carried on. It was difficult going down the steps and pathways, as they were so steep and slippery.
We made or way down to where the little truck was waiting. We could see Chris and Jack coming back so we waited for them. Jack decided to come in the truck with us but Chris said he would rather walk and he the raced us and beat us even though we were in the truck. When at the bottom we looked back up the mountain and were amazed at how far we'd climbed, truly a memorable experience.
Written By Megan Currie