After yesterday's long car ride, we took a down day today to play around Nanchang. It was a good time to explore since we really didn't have anything important to take care of today.
The first stop was a tea shop. We sampled a few of the prized green teas that the region is known for and were treated to a show of tea pouring. The girl pouring the tea showed us the way to serve tea if you're really trying to impress people. She preheated the cups by pouring in hot water and then dumped it out. Then washed the tea leaves with water to get them ready to make tea. The washing water looked like tea to me, but then she poured that water out. Then she poured in water to brew the tea and trickled it in on the edge of the cup to not disturb the tea. The first cup smelled wonderful and tasted delicious. BUT! She told us then, that the best cup to have is the second cup that is brewed from the leaves. It is supposed to have a lighter and more delicate flavor that is highly prized.
Seriously after all this effort, I think I'm gonna stick with coffee. This tea stuff just isn't my thing. Jamie however, was in tea snob heaven.
The next stop was a porcelain showroom. WanYing's province is known for having the best porcelain in China.
So our next stop was to a local park, "Peoples Park." We walked first through ornate gardens with walkways and then found ourselves in an outdoor exercise area. Everywhere we've gone in China, we've seen these outdoor exercise facilities with brightly painted exercise machines. There were nordic track like things, hand bikes, elliptical machines, things to hang from. I tried out the pull up bars and knocked out a few kipping pull ups just for good measure. Now my hands hurt. Maybe all those extra fried wantons at breakfast have been a bad idea.
On our walk out, we passed men practicing calligraphy with water on the tile walkways and a high school girl taking what we guessed were portraits for her yearbook or headshots or something. The photographer asked if Ben would pose with her and he obliged with his usual aplomb when it comes to strange chinese people pulling him into photos. We finished up our outing by going out to lunch with our interpreter Jane. She's been great to us here in Nanchang and we'll sure miss her when we move to Guangzhou next.
And good-bye Jiangxi province. Thanks for giving our little WanYing a great place to call her birthplace. Tomorrow we're off to Guangzhou to complete the last of the paperwork to bring our girl home!
(Jamie typing now)
Today's prayer request:
Sam's tummy is a little off today. He's taking it like a champ, but this is a great reminder of how blessed our health has been throughout this trip. Please join us in prayer that we all keep our food down for the remainder of the trip and that God will continue to bless our bodies and hearts throughout this adventure with good health, great rest, and a continual reliance on Him.