Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Dr. Pornthip Rojanasunan - The most trusted Siamese


Do you know who Thai trusted the most? Conducted in October 2009, the survey found Dr. Pornthip Rojanasunan(พรทิพย์ โรจนสุนันท์)to be the most trusted individual in all of Thailand while Doctors were the most trusted group.

Most Trusted Individuals: This survey found that out of 80 individuals Thailand's renowned forensic pathologist and director of the Forensic Science Institute, Dr. Pornthip Rojanasunan was ranked as the most trusted individual of the year. She was followed by Phra Ajarn Alongkot Dikkapanyo, the head monk at the famous Buddhist AIDS temple, Wat Phra Baht Nam Phu, Dr. Sumet Tantivechakul, secretary general of the Chaipattana Foundation, Phra Promkunaporn (Prayut Payutto) acclaimed spiritual leader and winner of an UNESCO Prize for Peace Education, and Phanya Nirunkul media tycoon who was the fifth most trusted individual.

The rest of the top ten were film director Prince Chatrichalerm Yukol (6), leading banker Banthoon Lamsam (7), social workers Nuannoi Timkul (8) and Suthasinee Noiin (9), and renowned marine environmentalist Dr. Torn Thamrongnawasawat (10).

People trust those who do good deeds for society: The majority of this survey's top 10 most trusted individuals were people who worked in non-profit organizations and dedicated themselves to helping others. Some of the respondents pointed out that, Dr Pornthip Rojanasunan has worked “dedicatedly and fearlessly to bring justice to our society”. When it comes to trust, politicians are the lowest: According to the survey, politics was seen as the least trusted occupation, followed by Psychic or Astrologer and Insurance Agent. The survey also found that Thai respondents trusted security guards more than they trusted law enforcers.
(extracted from http://www.lifestyleasia.com/articles/culture_4/readers-digest-trust-survey_4336.htm)

The following from youtube are film on Dr Pornthip by National Geographic Channel:

Now we know why she was chosen as the most trusted person in Thailand.

The Thai people considered Dr Pornthip as their most trusted Siamese in Thailand. Recently she was in Malaysia to testify and provide her professional view at the inquest of Selangor political officer Teoh Beng Hock case.

Dr Pornthip has gained the respect of many Malaysian; whatever the case outcome, she will be voted high if a survey is to take place in Malaysia for her....She has the spirit and courage to be difference based on her professional ethic to speak the truth. She said "You have to understand. I work for the rights of the dead,....My objective is to help the dead". For the dead cannot speak for themselves. That is the duty of forensic professional.

The most trusted person in Thailand, with high professional ethic and sense of duty to her profession. That is professional trust, professionalism or integrity.....which is missing in many profession today.....

Related articles

1. http://www.lifestyleasia.com/articles/culture_4/readers-digest-trust-survey_4336.htm
2. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pornthip_Rojanasunand
3. Teoh Beng Hock, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Teoh_Beng_Hock
4. Dr Pornthip leaves for home, Teoh's lawyers shift focus to 'note', http://groups.yahoo.com/group/beritamalaysia/message/114364
5. My earlier blog dated Thursday, October 22, 2009,Dr Pornthip Rojanasunand(พรทิพย์ โรจนสุนันท์)

Play piano with feet

Maglish(Malaysian English) Song lah

Ah Niu - Speak my Language

Friday, August 20, 2010

Jamaluddin Ibrahim & National Day

This is an interesting interview of a Mandarin speaking Malay by a Mandarin speaking Malay reporter in Malaysia. It was from the Star online, during the Chinese new year sometime ago. It was a beautiful interview, where three languages of Mandarin, Malay and English were used. Suddenly I feel like sensing something familiar. The reporter's pronunciation is beautiful, like a typical Malaysian Chinese. The interviewee's English is also like a local Chinese speaking English.

I suddenly remember Kelantan, where a large population of Malay are in Chinese school, and majority of the local Chinese speak Kelantanese Malay like a typical Kelantan Malay.

I remember Kedah, I remember the common people where they can speak beautiful Malay. I also remember the Pasar Malay spoken by people of different background. I also remember a Penang Malay speak Hockkien. An Indian in Ipoh speak Cantonese, and a Chinese classmate from estate, who can speak Tamil. Oh, what a beautiful life in the ordinary people.

I remember P Ramli......

Our National Day is coming on 31-8-2010, the interview will give us some time to wonder, and ponder.... is it the time for One Malaysian, One Malaysia....of diversity or commonality?

Why when we are oversea, our feeling of Malaysianess is greater than we are in the country?...that is the question we need to ask, is the environment rich enough to nourish our spirit of nationalism?. Then, why the foreign environment?...

Look at the way we fly our national flags, the old torn down Malaysian flags all over the country, even in some government offices, old dirty national flags....the total lacking of the appreciation of symbolic nationalism, our national flag. Do we know the meaning of nationalism, and the national flag, despite many official campaign to fly national flags.....the lacking of discipline? or cultural "tidak apa" culture?...

Are we proud of the achievement of our Malaysian oversea, regardless the racial background?......and ponder why they can do well oversea, is it the free, liberty environment for them to excel? ...

What is our barrier? official policies? private prejudice / misperception? .... When will we walk out from the cocoon, and be a beautiful butterfly that fly high in the sky, happily and proudly.....as a confident Malaysian.

We are Malaysian, regardless of race, religion, class, language.....

Merdeka, merdeka, mederka..... another 31st August, and we are now 53 years old, an old nation, but ......with the mentality of new nation over the teething problems....lack of maturity to face the challenges ahead?....

What we had done for the past 50 years and more?.....do we have the criteria to become a great nation, a developed nation, a cultural nation?

Are we coming back to the beginning after more than 50 years? ...... some even forgot about the nation building history.....your history, our history, amend history or no history?....

Now , I remember the promise of the nation building when I was young 50 years ago.....and now I am an old Malaysian.....looking back, more than 50 years, the school days, I wonder why there must be such thing as politic. Otherwise we are still watching P Ramli show in the coffee shop and having laughter in our heart.......ya, we have lost something, something is missing.....

I have a dream, like Martin Luther King, may not be the same dream; but a dream for a better days, the same day on 31st August.....a dream for a greater, freer, better national environment....

But better keep to myself.....Happy Birthday....

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Kurashiki, Japan

View Larger Map

Kurashiki City or Kurashiki-shi(倉敷市)is a historic city located to the west of Okayama, Japan, sitting on the Takahashi River, on the coast of the Inland Sea.Kurashiki (倉敷) is one of Japan's great old merchant towns. Situated along a scenic canal at the foot of Mt. Tsurugata, Kurashiki's white-walled storehouses are beautifully preserved and open for exploration. Kurashiki is located on the eastern side of Honshu, the largest of the four main islands of Japan, 650 km south-west of Tokyo. It is part of the Okayama prefecture.

The modern city of Kurashiki was founded on April 1, 1928. Previously, it was the site of clashes between the Heike and Genji clans during the Heian period. It gradually developed as a riverport; during the Edo period, it became an area directly controlled by the Shogunate. Distinctive white-walled, black-tiled warehouses were built to store goods. During the Meiji Restoration (Japan's Industrial Revolution period), factories were built, including the Ohara Spinning Mill which still stands as the nostalgic tourist attraction Ivy Square.

On August 1, 2005, the town of Mabi, from Kibi District, and the town of Funao, from Asakuchi District, were merged with Kurashiki.

Visitors to Kurashiki can gain an insight into the city's past in the beautiful Bikan Historical Quarter, an area of traditional homes, storehouses and canals that date back to the Edo period.

During the Edo period, Kurashiki did heavy trade with the capital in rice, sugar, and other goods. Later, during the Meiji Restoration, the city became known for textiles. Kurashiki escaped World War II largely unscathed, and as a result, many of the original storehouses, mills, and shops remain in beautiful condition, open to visitors in the Bikan Historic Area.

The effect is delightful — storehouses (倉 kura) with lattice windows share space with weeping willows along the banks of the old canal, which is illuminated at night. The canal has led some overly optimistic tourist associations to call Kurashiki "the Venice of Japan". If not that — the city surrounding the Bikan area is as much a concrete jumble as any other in the country — Kurashiki is still a rare piece of old Japan, one that gives a sense of where people lived and worked, not merely the temples at which they worshipped.

The old merchant quarter is called the Bikan historical area. It contains many fine examples of 17th century wooden warehouses (kura, 倉) painted white with traditional black tiles, along a canal framed with weeping willows and filled with koi. The area has no electric poles in order to make the area more closely resemble the look of the Meiji period. The nearby AEON Shopping Center is a popular destination for the locals. One of the city's former town halls was located in the Kurashiki Kan, a European style building constructed in 1917.

Related articles

1. Kurashiki Bikan historical quarter ・Japan-I’s recommended tour route http://www.japan-i.jp/kurashiki/kurashiki_bikan_area.html

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

The 10 plus 1 roads worth to walk in life time

One of the article in http://www.thetravelerszone.com/travel-destinations/the-top-10-roads-worth-to-be-walked-at-least-once-in-a-lifetime/ listed the following roads as the top 10 Roads Worth to be walked at least once in a lifetime. According to the writer, the roads are The Pan American Highway, Parliament Street,Col de Turini, Road To Giza,9 de Julio Avenue, Lena Highway, The Guoliang Tunnel Road, Trollstingen ,and Lombard Street, California. The selection based on the tourist attraction, as the website is Travel website. The road selected may not be the most dangerous, the longest or the narrowest; nevertheless they are the one with spectacular view for the tourists.

You can see some pictures in the article, but I further elaborate with more details. I added further one extra for the tourist seeking excitement of the most dangerous road, Bolivia's Road of Death. So called 10 plus 1.....not for the weak heart. The Top 10 Roads Worth To Be Walked At Least Once In A Lifetime are:-

1. The Pan American Highway(inter-continental between North and South America)

The Pan American Highway, connecting the two Americas and crossing 15 countries, which facilitating the crossing of two continents, North America and South America.

The Pan-American Highway (French: Route panaméricaine, Spanish: Carretera Panamericana, Autopista Panamericana) is a network of roads measuring about 47,958 kilometers (29,800 miles) in total length. Except for an 87 kilometers (54 mi) rainforest break, called the Darién Gap, the road links the mainland nations of the Americas in a connected highway system. According to Guinness World Records, the Pan-American Highway is the world's longest "motorable road". However, because of the Darién Gap, it is not possible to cross between South America and Central America by traditional motor vehicle.

The Pan-American Highway system is mostly complete and extends from Prudhoe Bay, Alaska, in North America to the lower reaches of South America. Several highway termini are claimed to exist, including the cities of Puerto Montt and Quellón in Chile and Ushuaia in Argentina. No comprehensive route is officially defined in Canada and the United States, though several highways in the U.S. are called "Pan-American".

2. Parliament Street, Exeter, England

The narrowest street in the world lies in Exeter, England. Built in 1300 and barely fitting one person. It was formerly called Small Lane and was renamed when Parliament was derided by the city council for passing the 1832 Reform Bill. Parliament Street is a 50 metres (160 ft) long street in the city of Exeter, Devon, England. It links the High Street to Waterbeer Street and dates from the 14th century. At about 0.64 metres (25 in) at its narrowest and approximately 1.22 metres (48 in) at its widest, it has been claimed to be the world's narrowest street, although this title actually belongs to the Spreuerhofstraße in Reutlingen, Germany.

Ironically, the residents of Waterbeer Street subscribed £130 to have Parliament Street widened in 1836, but nothing was done about this.....

3. Col de Turini, France

Col de Turini is surely winding though the Alps and driving on it is surely an adventure even for the most experienced drivers. The spectacular view of the French territory and the large number of hairpins resembling the Monte Carlo F1 race track is making it extremely spectacular. Col de Turini (el. 1607 m) is a high mountain pass in the Alps in the department of Alpes-Maritimes in France. It lies near Sospel, between the communes of Moulinet and La Bollène-Vésubie in the Arrondissement of Nice.

It is famous for a stage of the Monte Carlo Rally which is held on the tight road with its many hairpin turns. Until a few years ago, the Turini was also driven at night, with thousands of fans watching the "Night of the Long Knives" as it was called, due to the strong high beam lights cutting through the night.

4. Road To Giza, Egypt

The oldest road in the world that was serving as a paved way towards Giza, Egypt is still visible even if 4,600 years did their best to make it invisible.

5. The Puxi Viaduct Shanghai, China

Shanghai is one of the most crowded cities in the world. The metropolis is having one of the most complicated highway knots in the world. Shanghai's Puxi Viaduct, one of the largest and busiest interchanges in the world, is a five-level interchange. The spectacular view of looking down at the street, while traveling in the highway higher up above the crowded street road is worth a visit in your life time.

6. 9 de Julio Avenue(Avenida 9 de Julio), Argentina

Argentina is the home of the widest road in the world. With six lanes on each side, this avenue is spectacular because of its size but also because of its uniqueness on the planet. Avenida 9 de Julio is an avenue in Buenos Aires, Argentina. Its name honors Argentina's Independence Day, July 9, 1816.

The avenue runs roughly one kilometer to the west of the Río de la Plata waterfront, from the Retiro district in the north to Constitución station in the south. The avenue has six lanes in each direction.

The northern end of the avenue is connected to the Arturo Illia expressway (which connects to Jorge Newbery airport and the Pan-American highway) and to Libertador avenue. The southern end is connected to the 25 de Mayo tollway (serving the West side of Greater Buenos Aires as well as Ezeiza airport) and the 9 de Julio elevated expressway which provides access to the two main southbound roads out of the city (route 1 to La Plata and route 2 to Mar del Plata).

7. M56 Lena Highway – Russia

Leave it to the Soviets to make a disaster and you will see one made a masterpiece. Whether you are swimming in the mud or break your neck driving on it this one is surely a road not worth taking.

M56 Lena Highway or The Amur-Yakutsk Highway (Russian: Амуро-Якутская автомобильная дорога or Russian: Амуро-Якутская автомагистраль) – a federal highway (road) in the Sakha Republic (Yakutia), Russia, connecting Yakutsk with the south. It runs parallel to the incomplete Amur Yakutsk Mainline railway. It takes its name from the Lena River, which runs more or less north-south in this part of Siberia. Actually, with Yakutsk situated entirely on the west bank of Lena, and the road running on the east bank, the highway terminates in Nizhny Bestyakh (Нижний Бестях), a settlement of 4,000 people opposite Yakutsk on the east bank of Lena. When river conditions permit, one may drive right over the frozen river to Yakutsk, or take the ferry, but much of the year the river is impassable due to flooding or ice floes or semi-thawed ice not supporting the weight of vehicles. There is no bridge over the Lena anywhere in Yakutia. One is meant to be built 40 kilometres (25 mi) south of Yakutsk center between 2009 and 2013, a dual-use railroad/road span of some 3 kilometres (1.9 mi) in length.

The road runs 1,212 kilometres (753 mi) south to Never. It was built in stages between 1925 and 1964. Although it is a federal highway, it is just a dirt road. When frozen in the winter, this makes for an excellent surface, and the posted speed limit is 70 kilometres per hour (43 mph). However, in the summer, with any significant rain, the road turns to impassible mud that often swallows whole smaller vehicles, contributing to the nickname 'The Highway from Hell'.

At Nizhny Bestyakh, Lena Highway connects to Kolyma Highway (The Road of Bones), also designated M56, linking Yakutsk with Magadan to the east, on the Pacific Ocean seacoast

8. The Guoliang Tunnel Road In China

Carved through the heart of the rock completely manually, this one took five years to be finished. Lives were lost during the construction of this spectacular road but its builders did not give up until it was finished.

The Guoliang Tunnel is carved along the side of and through a mountain in China. The tunnel is located in the Taihang Mountains which are situated in the Henan Province of China. Photos of the road are often misidentified as photos of the "Road of Death" in Bolivia.

Before the tunnel was constructed, access to the nearby Guoliang village was limited to a difficult path carved into the mountainside. The village is nestled in a valley surrounded by towering mountains cut off from civilization. In 1972 a group of villagers led by Shen Mingxin decided to carve a road into the side of the mountain. They raised money to purchase hammers and steel tools. Thirteen villagers began the project. The tunnel is 1.2 kilometres (0.75 mi) long, 5 metres (16 ft) tall and 4 metres (13 ft) wide. Some of the villagers died in accidents during construction. On 1 May 1977 the tunnel was opened to traffic

9. Trollstingen –Norway

Trollstingen, translated in English is English: The Troll Ladder or The Troll Path. It is a mountain road in Rauma, Norway, part of Norwegian National Road 63 connecting Åndalsnes in Rauma and Valldal in Norddal. It is a popular tourist attraction due to its steep incline of 9% and eleven hairpin bends up a steep mountain side. Trollstigen was opened on July 31, 1936, by King Haakon VII after 8 years of construction.

The road up is narrow with many sharp bends, and although it has been widened in recent years, vehicles over 12.4 metres long are prohibited from driving the road. At the top there is large parking place which allows visitors to leave their cars and walk for about ten minutes to a viewing balcony which overlooks the road with its bends and the Stigfossen waterfall. Stigfossen is a beautiful waterfall which falls 320 metres down the mountain side.

Trollstigen is closed during the fall and winter months. A normal opening season stretches from the mid of May to October, but may sometimes be shorter or longer due to changes in the weather conditions.

Looking almost as if it was brought down from a sci fi movie, this road is more than spectacular spread over two mountain sides and the valley between them. Of course this road is very hard to drive but the amazing view and the beautiful waterfalls around it make the trip worth it.

10. Lombard Street, California, USA

This looks more like a zig-zag rather than a real street. Extremely narrow hairpins going down a hill are almost amusing to drive on.

and after that, the most dangerous road in the world..."Road of Death" in Bolivia.

10+1: Yungas Road, Bolivia

The North Yungas Road (alternatively known as Grove's Road, Coroico Road, Camino de las Yungas, El Camino de la Muerte, Road of Death or Death Road) is a 61-kilometre (38 mi) or 69-kilometre (43 mi) road[1] leading from La Paz to Coroico, 56 kilometres (35 mi) northeast of La Paz in the Yungas region of Bolivia. It is legendary for its extreme danger and in 1995 the Inter-American Development Bank christened it as the "world's most dangerous road". One estimate is that 200 to 300 travellers were killed yearly along the road. The road includes crosses marking many of the spots where vehicles have fallen.

A South Yungas Road (Chulumani Road) exists that connects La Paz to Chulumani, 64 kilometres (40 mi) east of La Paz, and is considered to be nearly as dangerous as the north road.

Note: Photographs of China's Guoliang Tunnel are often incorrectly identified as showing the Yungas Road

That is it.....the 10 plus 1 road, you must visit once in a life time; but some is a comfortable walk, some are dangerous drive along the winding mountain road. Once in life time, some it may be the only time in their life, and they never come back.....

Related articles

1. Dare to Drive on Any of the 19 Extremely Dangerous Roads on Earth, http://www.travelfront.com/most-dangerous-roads-on-earth/
2. The Most Dangerous Roads in the World, http://thecityfix.com/the-most-dangerous-roads-in-the-world/
3. Some Complicated Road Junctions, http://trifter.com/practical-travel/adventure-travel/some-complicated-road-junctions/

Hua Shan (华山/ 華山)

Hua Shan (华山/ 華山) is located in the Shaanxi Province(陝西省), about 120 kilometres east of the city of Xi'an(西安市), near the city Huayin(华阴市) in China. Also known as Xi Yue(西岳), literally The Western Sacred Mountain, it is the western mountain of China's Five Sacred Mountains(五岳), and has a long history of religious significance.

The 5 Sacred Mountains(五嶽 or 五岳) are:-

1. Dongyue(东岳)or East - Mount Tai or Taishan(泰山) from Shangdong Province;
2. Nan Yue (南岳)or South- Mount Heng(衡山)of Hunan Province;
3. Xi Yue(西岳)or West- Mount Hua or Huashan(华山) of Shaanxi Province;
4. Beiyue(北岳)or North- Mount Heng or Hengshan (恒山) from Shanxi Province;
5. Zhongyue(中岳)or Central - Mount Song or Songshan(嵩山) of Henan province

The 5 sacred mountains are also the 5 sacred mountains of Taoism or Daoism(道教名山). The most sacred mountain is Taishan(泰山是中国五岳之首). Coincidentally two of the mountains are with the same English name, due to pronunciation, Mount Heng; but in Chinese they are actually two different mountain, 衡山 & 恒山. Huashan is one of the most difficult and dangerous mountain among the 5 sacred mountains(“奇险天下第一山”之称).

Originally Huashan is classified as having three peaks, in modern times the mountain is classified as five main peaks, of which the highest is the South Peak at 2160 m.

Huashan is located near the southeast corner of the Ordos Loop section of the Yellow River basin(黄河流域), south of the Wei River(淮河) valley, at the eastern end of the Qinling Mountains (秦岭, Tsinling or Chinling/Qinling), in southern Shaanxi province. It is part of the Kunlun Mountains Range(昆仑山脉) that divides not only northern and southern Shaanxi, but also China.

There are 5 major peaks in Huashan. Traditionally, only the giant plateau with its summits to the south of the peak Wu Yun Feng (五雲峰, literally Five Cloud Summit) was called Tai Hua Shan (太華山, literally Grand Hua Shan or Grand Flower Mountain). It could only be accessed through the ridge known as Cang Long Ling (蒼龍嶺, literally Dark Dragon Ridge) until a second trail was built in the 1980's to go around Cang Long Ling. Three peaks were identified with respective summits: the East Peak, South Peak and West Peak.

The East Peak, Dong Feng (東峰), consists of four summits. The highest summit is Cao Yang Feng (朝陽峰, literrally Facing Yang Summit, i.e. the summit facing the Sun). It's elevation is reported to be 2096.2 meters and its name is often used as the name for the whole East Peak. This is the peak with the best view of sunrise. To the east of Cao Yang Feng is Shi Lou Feng (石楼峰, literally Stone Tower Peak), to the south is Bo Tai Feng (博台峰, literally Broad Terrace Peak) and to the west is Yu Nue Feng (玉女峰, literally Jade Maiden Peak). Yu Nue Feng is now officially recognized as the Middle Peak of Hua Shan.

The South Peak, Nan Feng, consists of three summits. The highest summit is Luo Yan Feng (落雁峰, literally Dropping Swallow Summit), with an elevation of 2154.9 meters. To the east is Song Gui Feng (松檜峰, literally Pinaceae Juniperus chinensis Peak), and to the west is Xiao Zi Feng (孝子峰, literally Filial Piety Son Peak).

The West Peak, Xi Feng has only one summit and it is known as Lian Hua Feng (蓮花峰) or Fu Rong Feng (芙蓉峰), both literally mean Lutus Flower Peak. The elevation is 2082.6 meters. This is the peak with the most beautiful view of the mountain.

With the development of new trail to Hua Shan in the 3rd to 5th century along the Hua Shan Gorge, the peak immediately to the north of Cang Long Ling, Yun Tai Feng (雲臺峰, literally Cloud Terrace Peak), was identified as the North Peak. It is the lowest of the five peaks with an elevation of 1614.9 meters.

The Middle Peak is Yu Nue Feng(玉女峰, literally means maiden peak), which was a summit of the East Peak.

(source: wikipedia)

There are two walking trails leading to Huashan's North Peak (1613 m), the lowest of the mountain's five major peaks. The most popular is the traditional route in Hua Shan Yu (Hua Shan Gorge)华山峪(自古华山一条路) first developed in 3rd to 4th century and with successive expansion, mostly during Tang Dynasty. It winds for 6 km from Huashan village to the north peak.

A new route in Huang Pu Yu (Huang Pu Gorge, named after the hermit Huang Lu Zi who lived in this gorge in 8th century BC) that follows the cable car to the North Peak is actually the ancient trail used prior to Tang Dynasty which has since fallen into disrepair. It had only been known to local villagers living nearby at the gorges until 1949, when a group of 7 PLA with a local guide used this route to climb to North Peak and captured over 100 KMT soldiers stationed in North Peak and along the routes in the traditional route. This trail is now known as "The Route Intelligent Take-over of Hua Shan" and has reinforced in early 2000. The Cable Car System stations are built next to the beginning and ends of this trail.

From the North Peak, a series of paths rise up to the Cang Long Ling, which is a climb more than 300 meters on top of a mountain ridge. This was the only trail to go to the four other peaks, the West Peak (2038 m), the Center Peak (2042 m), the East Peak (2100 m) and the South Peak (2160 m), until a new path was built to the east and walk around the ridge in 1998.

Huashan has many temples and other religious structures on its slopes and peaks. At the foot of the mountain is the Cloister of the Jade Spring (玉泉院), which is dedicated to Chen Tuan(陈抟, 871-989) or Master Xīyí(希夷先生). The temple that built by Emperor Hang Wu Ti(汉武帝)of Hang Dynasty, Xiyue Temple(西嶽庙),is ranked as the No. 1 temple among the 5 sacred mountains(“五岳第一庙").(而建于汉武帝在位時的西嶽庙,有着“陕西故宫”和“五岳第一庙”之稱誉,這是五岳中建制最早和面積最大的庙宇). Huashan is one of the sacred mountain for Taoism.

If you know Chinese, the blog article from http://synyan.spaces.live.com/Blog/cns!1pke1atbC-jPGExNNnM98VzA!2576.entry is a good read. This is in view that the scenic points in China and Huashan are descriptive by using Chinese language including proverbs and stories from kongfu movie and classic literature books. e.g. Hua Shan Yu (Hua Shan Gorge) or 华山峪 is "自古华山一条路" which is translate to " from the ancient time there is only one road in Huashan".

The classical literature praised highly of Huashan since ancient time. Zhang Binglin(章太炎, December 25, 1868 — June 14, 1936) was a Chinese philologist, textual critic and anti-Manchu revolutionary. From his research, it revealed that Huashan is one of the source of Chinese civilization(华山是中华民族文化的发祥地之一). Zhonghua(中华), Huaxia(华夏), the names used to represent China or Chinese civilization, are derived from the name of Huashan(“中华”、“华夏” 皆因华山而得名). The name " Hua(华)" means Chinese e.g. Huaren mean Chinese people. Hua Shan can also means the mountain of Chinese. Many ancient scholars and poets have been to Huashan, including Du Fu(杜甫), Li Po(李白), not only that historically 56 emperors had visited Huashan. Huashan is significant in Chinese history, both culturally, politically, and in religion.

“巨灵咆哮劈两山,洪波喷流射东海”, 詩仙李白; how am I to translate it in English?....by enlightened poet or heavenly poet(詩仙) Li Bai or Li Po(李白). Some believe that Li Bai's birthplace is Chu, Kazakhstan while another candidate is Suiye (Chinese: 碎叶城;) in Central Asia (near modern-day Tokmok, Kyrgyzstan). However, his family had originally dwelt in Shaanxi Province(陝西省成纪), what is now southeastern Gansu(甘肃靜寧), and later moved to Jiangyou, near modern Chengdu in Sichuan province, when he was five years old. Li Po had been to Huashan often, and left many poems and calligraphy carving on the rocks. Carving poems on the rock is a form of Chinese art. In Huashan, you will be indulged in the atmosphere of Chinese classic art and literature, surrounding by nature, and the interaction of nature and human expression of their love.

The kongfu classic literate or Wuxia novels(武俠小說) have always used Huashan in their stories; and Huashan sect(华山派)is one of the powerful sect in kongfu(功夫) or wushu((武術)or Chinese martial arts. The Huanshan sect originate from Huashan or Hua Mountain. Huashan sect is good at sword fighting. The other major sects are Shaolin sect (少林派)from Shaolin Monastery (少林寺), Wudang Sect(武當派) from Wudang Mountains (武當山),Emei sect(峨嵋派)from Mount Emei (峨嵋山) and Kunlun sect(崑崙派)from Kunlun Mountains (崑崙山). The novels by authors Jin Yong (金庸), Liang Yusheng (梁羽生), Gu Long (古龍), Wen Ruian (溫瑞安) are the popular one. The world of martial arts is called Jianghu (江湖). So Huashan is a popular place for people from Jianghu, they will challenge their opponents to fight or compare their skills in martial arts, especially sword fighting, they called it "Huashan loon chian"(華山論劍)or literally means the discussing or sharing of the sword fighting skills at Huashan, to compete for the best sword fighter in Jianghu(爭奪當世第一高手之榮耀). Huashan become famous among the people from Jianghu or martial arts world , and the Wuxia novels readers. That is why Huashan is the top prize for all martial art hero or Jianghu how jia(江湖豪杰), maybe the roughness and difficulty of the climb reflect the spiritual pursuit of martial art students. It is also the place for people who are not willing to work for the emperor or involved in the Jianghu anymore, decide to spend their life hiding and farming in the mountain. These people who have isolated themselves from Jianghu and outside world and escaped in Huashan are called hermit from Jianghu(江湖隐士). Here, you are really in the story of Wuxia novels(武俠小說)....in Huashan - the natural Disneyland of Wuxia novels......

In the Mountains(by: Li Bai (701-762) translated by Shigeyoshi Obata)

Why do I live among the green mountains?
I laugh and answer not, my soul is serene:
It dwells in another heaven and earth belonging to no man.
The peach trees are in flower, and the water flows on....

Extract from http://synyan.spaces.live.com/Blog/cns!1pke1atbC-jPGExNNnM98VzA!2576.entry :



山路很长。一路上经过" 白蛇中箭处”和“混元石”、“鱼石”、“三里坝”、“五里关”、“石门”、“毛女洞”。这条长长的山路叫“华峪”,是给诸人热身用的——而事实上诸人早已热了,在入山的地方偶就把厚牦牛绒衫脱掉了。不过毕竟是四月的山间,雾气颇重,悠悠的山岚吹来还正是凉。猛然间才发现已可看见呼出的雾气了,说明气温应在十度以下吧!








(extract from http://synyan.spaces.live.com/Blog/cns!1pke1atbC-jPGExNNnM98VzA!2576.entry)


千尺幢千尺‘山童. “幢”意为:1、chuáng,古代旗帜一类的东西; 2、刻着佛号或经咒的石柱子;3、zhuàng,<方>量词。又听当地山民发音是“chuǎn”,于是猜想“千尺幢”大概是指“千尺的咒文铺陈的山路”吧!

HuaShan Plank Path Walking華山長空棧道

Penang Food Paradise

Penang is food paradise. Why, it is the cultural melting pot of the East and West; the food and spices from the cultural interaction of historical Spice Route; the food and taste of the multiracial interaction; the food derived from the daily food of working class that turn into street food of Penang......You have varieties of types, tastes, smells, colour, just to meet your taste.....and sight.

(source: Lonely Planet)