It's been a while. I believe some of you have noticed my absence. That happened because of my young age and the necessity to finish school before moving on to do the things I love to do.
However, that period is now over and I am trying to sort many things about this blog and literature in general out, which means I will come back to writing and posting here (that might take time, there's loads of reading to do).
If you have any requests (even if you've written them in the comments some time ago), you can write them (or repeat them) under this post. I am making a list of those requests and will definitely try my best to respond.
That's it for now. Thank you for your patience. :)
23 September 2014
25 July 2014
1 February 2014
29 December 2013
23 November 2013
15 November 2013
Der Ling: She asked me how I had enjoyed the candy, and told me not to sleep... (From 'Two Years in the Forbidden City')
"The performance took place on a stage erected in the courtyard, and Her Majesty closed in one part of her veranda for the use of the guests and Court ladies. During the performance I began to feel very drowsy, and eventually fell fast asleep leaning against one of the pillars. I awoke rather suddenly to find that something had been dropped into my mouth, but on investigation I found it was nothing worse than a piece of candy, which I immediately proceeded to eat. On approaching Her Majesty, she asked me how I had enjoyed the candy, and told me not to sleep, but to have a good time like the rest. I never saw Her Majesty in better humor. She played with us just like a young girl, and one could hardly recognize in her the severe Empress Dowager we knew her to be."
― Der Ling. Two Years in the Forbidden City
Tonight I am quoting Der Ling, daughter of Yu Keng, a Manchu born in 1885 and the First lady-in-waiting to Empress Dowager Cixi. Her memoirs Two Years in the Forbidden City were published in 1911, when the Dynasty of Qing collapsed, three years after the death of Empress Cixi.
Empress Dowager Cixi is generally portrayed as a despot and villain responsible for the fall of the Dinasty in both China and Europe, yet some historians, portraying her in a more positive way, suggest that she prevented the disorder and was no more ruthless than other rulers.
The reason of posting something about Empress Dowager Cixi is the date. If it's still 15th of November somewhere, then it's the day that she died 105 years ago. I didn't really think I'd mark this date somewhere but somehow I haven't forgotten it ever since the 100th anniversary five years ago, when I read a couple of books about the Empress, both written by Anchee Min.
If you're ever looking for some good historical fiction, you might want to see the works of Anchee Min, she's great. And so her books are the reason I'm posting something on China today.
105 years after Empress Cixi
9 November 2013
2 November 2013
“Time passed. But time flows in many streams. Like a river, an inner stream of time will flow rapidly at some places and sluggishly at others, or perhaps even stand hopelessly stagnant. Cosmic time is the same for everyone, but human time differs with each person. Time flows in the same way for all human beings; every human being flows through time in a different way.”
― Yasunari Kawabata, Beauty and Sadness