breaking news: i just started using my new orange flavored Crest toothpase, having finished the last one, a lemon flavored one. both taste great and must be manufactured only for the Asian market. I think there is a strawberry flavored one, although i may be hallucinating. why don't they sell these stateside? what are they afraid of?
view outside the window yesterday, with the sky clear and the sun reflecting on the World Financial Center and Jing Mao towers in the distance. The Oriental Pearl tower also caught the rays of the sun on its curvature.
check out this rock. on one side it shows the layers of sedimentation. then on the top surface it shows wavy curves formed by water movement over what probably was sand at one point. i'm good at changing the subject, eh?
Edit: The ripple surface of these rocks is very interesting. There was a sign in the park describing it: "Rocks were formed 1200Ma ago and are quartzose sandstone, which is purplish red because Fe in rocks is oxidized. The wave marks on the rocks beddding surface are named ripple in geology which form because the sea waves carry the sandstone grains near littoralal shallow water and deposited here. The ripple is a very important sign of depoisitional environment in geology. The motion, direction and depth of sea water can be known by research and observation of ripple and bedding and the depositional environment can be concluded." Below is a close up of the ripple surface of the rock.
My questions to him where on the prepartion of the teas - how hot is the water, what type of equipment to use, etc. What I typically observe at these tea shops is that water is boiled in a tea pot then quickly passed through the tea, then the tea is served. I don't see people concerned about the heat of the water. But if you are going to be more accurate - red teas, pu-er teas and mountain oolongs can get boiling water of 90c or higher (194f). You typically put the tea in a red clay teapot, pour the water, then pour the tea out into a serving container, typically of glass, then pour this tea into teacups. Typically you throw out the first tea poured into the teacups, as that is to warm them and to introduce the flavor. That is the method when serving teas to guests, but it's not what one typically does for oneself. It seems wasteful to throw out tea.
Green teas are young teas and can get water that is heated less, to about 80c poured through it. It is usually prepared in glass containers, not clay ones. The typical Chinese colleague will put leaves in the bottom of a cup and pour boiling water. I use a jar that has a straining container at the top and pass boiling water through it. One serving of tea gives me about 6 eight ounce servings. The container holds about 24 ounces.
I mentioned to him that in the office we just have a device that dispenses boiling water and I would have no knowledge of the temperature at which it is dispensed. So the logical advice is to use boiling water and not worry about the exact temperature. In the end, it's more important to just drink a lot of tea for health and not worry so much about the preparation. In my personal opinion, after living here in China a year and a half, where I have been exposed to great teas, is that you also need to buy good quality tea. Cheap tea will taste bitter.
There is a website that discusses a lot about the types of teas and their preparation, Nobleharbor.
the room was packed. a casualty of the shala shenanigans is that Green Giant has not been in the room assisting. what a shame. Cobra Chaser practiced next to me. she has lots of expression, such as an "Oio a!" when coming to standing from Urdvha Danurasana. she also sometimes gets stuck in the rolls of Garbo Pindasana. hehe. oops. dristhe.
yesterday i accompanied a former colleague to the Expo. By her suggestion, we went in the late afternoon. we did not anticipate that this day there would be 500,000 people. she wanted to eat dinner at a French restaurant rated with 3 Michelin stars, so we did. here are some snapshots of things we saw.
a light fixture and a canopy
Alsace, France, Pavilion
i referred to this as the Sketchup building, since it seems entirely designed using Google Sketchup, a popular tools for architects here. that probably sounds funny only to architects. it's a green building. i'm not criticizing it because i do not know what the exhibit is about, however i find it funny.
the German Pavilion. i attended a workshop a few months ago and one of the presenters was the local architect for this project. his view was that these are meant to be temporary structures because they are exhibit spaces with no function, however zoomy they seem to be. that could be a good opinion, however, historically, Pavilions at World's Fairs have great influence on the architecture of succeeding generations.
the French Pavilion
there was a Disney-esque parade
a kid amusingly used his mom's head, then his sister's head as a level surface from which to take pictures of the parade.
the facade of the Sweden Pavilion, i understand, is based on the map of the capital of Sweden
of the European Pavilions we were able to go into Denmark's Pavilion, for which the famous Little Mermaid statue, a landmark in Denmark, was brought.
although it is intended that you can bike to the top of the pavilion and then down, it probably was a logistics nightmare to control their use. all of the bikes where locked when we visited.
a fountain at the top of the building
i have been talking to people who have visited the Expo. a popular Pavilion is the Saudi Arabia one, which has a movie about the history of their country. however, it can take about 6 to 9 hours to wait to get in. you have to plan your day around queuing for it at the Expo if you plan to see it. basically people wait at 6:00am outside the gate, then run when the gates open at 9:00am to queue for that exhibit. that will mean only a two hour queue. if you walk, you will have to wait about six hours. apparently you tell volunteers that you have to go to the bathroom when you have to leave the line for a bathroom break. you basically have to treat it as if you were hiking and would take food, a small foldable stool, a book to read, etc. a former colleague's parents waited 9 hours. another former colleague waited six hours, plus two additional ones while a projector equipment was repaired. the wait at other popular pavilions can be four hours. but the wait in some is only 5 to 10 minutes. it appears that Saturdays is the busiest day, which is the day i chose to go for the first time. if you buy afternoon tickets, they are half price. so we spent time walking around pavilions since the lines where too long to go in. also, the size of the Expo site is a consideration. it is enormous. the entire city of Hong Kong, including Kowloon fits in the site. So does the city of Bern, Switzerland. So you have to use the bus system or walk a lot to get around.
According to the British "Daily Telegraph" two Norwegian artists like to demonstrate exquisite balance skills. here they did a stunt, doing a wheelbarrow in a 1400-meter-high cliff. i guess they do acroyoga and would be good at extreme ironing as well.
i will be practicing at home while the group finds a new location. the shala was growing, but it seems that a competitor questioned whether region was being promoted, because angeli mudra asana is viewed to belong at home or in the temple. i need to pick up my manduka. my favorite cake is carrot cake and Saturday is my birthday. my favorite ice cream is chocolate. my favorite cologne is sandalwood. send gifts. the weather is warm. today the cleaning lady cleans the apartment. i'd rather be reporting on Jolly Green Giant, Bamboo Knight, Leaping Lung, Mellow Man, Cobra Tamer, Pot of Poppies, Mr & Mrs. Swan, Moon Pop, the Aviator, Silentsilk Maiden, La Francesita or TalkingPink Lilly.
yesterday i thought i would go for a massage to the local studio of a chain. i go often to a larger location of the same chain, in the middle of the commercial district. i requested a traditional Chinese massage. the therapist was a meat grinder. it was as if a 20 year old was practicing on another 20 year old. asking to go softer did nothing to alleviate the pressure. when he was at the lower back i freaked out so he avoided the area.
i have been unsubscribing from emails from vendors, to the tune of two per day. my email inbox gets about 25 emails daily. those from family and friends, or on yoga and architecture i plan to keep.
i was was given the next pose! Skippetty's least fave - Laghu Varjrasana. :)) i wasn't asking for it. the picture is of Arjuna doing it, from his website. it was again sweaty-hot today in the shala - good for tapas. when doing Urdva Danurasana - now i'm doing about nine lifts up, on the last three i thought of Guruji's statement, "walk hands inside feet" to walk the hands towards the feet and get more lift. there must be wisdom in those words. i could lift way up comfortably.