"Where Confucius lived and where my ancestors live!" Shandong Sheng by cuicui

Shandong Sheng Travel Guide: 402 reviews and 1,669 photos

The village where my personal forefathers lived and where all relatives on my mother's side live to the present day is now China's 'Capital of Garlic'. When I first visited the village in the summer of 1999 before I left for the U. S., everywhere on the streets are garlic in red netted bags being measured and traded, and in the yard of every family everyone who's old enough is processing garlic, cutting the tail off, peeling some skins off, and so on. The bigger, the rounder, and the whiter the garlic, the more it will be sold at. However, the farmers themselves make a very tiny part of the profits.
Villages in Shangdong Province are among the richest of the country. Every family has TVs, fans, tricycles (which are as big as tractors, and which my cousin drove to take me to visit relatives), some have motorcycles. As far as I can see, this place combines modernity and primitiveness. When I went back there the summer of 2002, a major road is being built, more motorcycles, and taxicabs (Volkswagan Santanas and man-peddled tricycles).
The reason I went back there is because my professor from Northwestern wants to interview some old Chinese women about their foot-binding practices. She also took her daughter who served as a photographer. The whole village turned out to see us, and as we were interviewing, kids even climbed onto the windowpanes to watch us, they wave in front of the camera and vidoe camera ecstatically. My professor edited that Beautiful video.

A holy mountain of Taoism. Mountains in China tend to have stone-paved stairs. I've seen very few mountains in the U. S. But Starved Rock State Park in Illinois has wooden stairs. This is #1 of the five holy mountains of China.

We got up at 2 am and a van took us to the midpoint of the mountain in total darkness. I only knew the van was running zigzag and zigzag. When we started climbing, all around me were dark crowds, with torches here and there. I was just following, my front was very chilly, while my back was sweating hot (particularly under the cover of my backpack). At some point, everybody needs to rent a cotton coat that is originally made for soldiers. So I did. When I watched sunrise at the Yellow Mountain the summer of 2002, nobody needs a winter coat, because even though it's (over 200 meters) taller than Mount Tai (about 1564 meters) it is much further south.

  • Last visit to Shandong Sheng: Aug 2002
  • Intro Updated Oct 22, 2003
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Comments (1)

  • Sharrie's Profile Photo
    Dec 1, 2003 at 2:36 AM

    I enjoyed reading about your "hometown". This is one part of China I haven't been to. I hope to go back again next year for more exploration! It's an amazing country :-) Keep up the good works!

cuicui

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