Surprise Side Trips

We had quite the treat this morning! There is a big national competition in town at the stadium. It’s not a taiji competition, but the opening ceremony featured taiji demonstrations from the local schools. Our teacher GM Chen Xiaoxing led a group of 50 players in a beautiful performance of Chen style taiji, doing a demo form that combines elements of laojia and xinjia, and yilu and erlu. We marched to the stadium with the performers, which ended up being sort of like a second line march. People were taking pictures of us all and grabbing stealth shots next to our teacher. The performance was amazing and made us all really proud to be a part of this school. After the demo, we returned to the school for our usual morning class. 

We were asked to have lunch with our teacher and his sons and daughter and all of the performers at a local restaurant. It was celebratory as this was apparently a big demonstration opportunity. There was lots of toasting and alcohol and some interesting food, then it was nap time. 

Class is in a room with fans today. The main hall is too hot. The temperature today got up to 101. We are all feeling it - drinking lots of water and being given watermelon by our teacher on all the breaks. Training is good - our joints and muscles are all supple and loose. 

I have lots of videos and will post a photo album once we get home. Two more days then we become tourists for a few days.