A little later than I planned (due to mundane domestic issues), I got myself out to the hills for a bit of a walk and to blow away the cobwebs.
Since it was already fairly late, and certainly very cold, there weren’t too many people about, which was nice. I strolled around for a while, noting that my hill-climbing muscles aren’t what they were when I was going up Cadair Idris or the Rhinogau every weekend! The air wasn’t too bad, though there was a distinct metallic tang.
Descending a bit before dusk fell, I settled myself into a small viewing platform.
From there, I faced the old Tibetan Buddhist monastery, and the mountains behind, looking west.
Gradually, the sun’s glow faded before me, and the twilight gathered between the trees. The birds fell silent. The stillness was broken only by distant shouts from smalls groups of people leaving the park, and (thankfully equally distant) ferocious barking from the town’s guard dogs. I stood in zhan zhuang for a while, until three bells tolled (from my iPhone! I’m using the free app ‘Equanimity’ to time my standing sessions).
Then I too left the park just before the gates were closed, and returned to Beijing on the 331. Incidentally, I popped into the martial arts store, and they’ve restocked: lots of goodies there, including the biggest sword ever. I keep thinking I must buy it someday, though I’m not at all sure I could get it up the stairs to my apartment!
Anyway, as a reminder not to take all this too seriously, I just found this blast from the past on YouTube – now that is swordfighting 🙂