A poem For Ling Ling

Tina was talking about a little niece of hers. Ling Ling is three years old. It seems she is very naughty and keeps fighting with every one. If you scold her she will try to beat you. I like Ling Ling already. Here is a poem for her.

Some one bring bring,
To me Ling Ling,
heard she is feisty,
I like kids nasty

Ling Ling on one of the rare occasions when she is not beating any one

The Lantern Show In Zigong

Zigong is famous for its lantern show. The people here are expert at making all kind of figures - human, animals, scenic spots, scenes from historical books etc. with their lanterns. There is a park near the city center where they exhibit these lanterns.

Tang Ladies
Tang dynasty scene

Mr Bush
Even Mr. Bush was here.

Evil Sars
Here is the evil SARS virus. You can see the doctors in the background

Wu Song killing the Tiger

Wu Song the tiger slayer. He appears in two famous classics - The outlaw of the Marshes and The Golden Lotus. He is a valiant fighter who kills a Tiger with his bare hands. Later he kills his sister in law (the golden lotus) and her lover as he discovers that they poisoned his brother. He runs away from justice and becomes an outlaw.


Malcolm returned from Germany and brought for us an East German flags. It joins our collection of socialist flags from China and Lao PDR. Does any one have a North Korean flag?

It seems we are not the only one interested in socailist memories. An article from Wired.

Rumi and my favourite city

As a traveler, people often ask me about my favourite city. I like to respond that my favourite city is the place where my love resides.    I stole the words from a Persian poet.

ONCE a beloved asked her lover: “Friend,
You have seen many places in the world!
Now – which of all these cities was the best?
He said: “The city where my sweetheart lives!”

Jelaluddin Rumi  lived in the thirteenth century. I have often come across Rumi’s poems in books. Rumi was raised in a deeply religious family. Later in his life he started drifting to mysticism. And with that came beautiful verses like these…

Come, come again, whoever you are, come!
Heathen, fire worshipper or idolatrous, come!
Come even if you broke your penitence a hundred times,
Ours is the portal of hope, come as you are .


Seek knowledge which unravels mysteries
Before your life comes to close
Give up that non-existence which looks like existence,
Seek that Existence which looks like non-existence!

And finally

When we are dead, seek not our tomb in the earth, but find it in the hearts of men.

Archaeological Find??

The island of Java , with its location was a melting pot of many influences. The old Javanese scripts were based on some of the south Indian scripts. You can immediately spot the curving characters similar to modern day Burmese, Khmer, Laotian, Thai and the extinct Cham script. I was surprised to find a statue inscribed in Devnagri script. Devnagri is used to write some languages like Hindi. I can read the words but I don’t know the meanings. I suspect it is Sanskrit. I am still investigating.

the statue with the inscription in devnagri script.

I was actually able to read this. it spells “yankuran”.

this reads “dvalyu”