Thursday, February 7, 2013

Sifu Garry’s Blog
“Roots of Wing Chun” China Trip
Guangzhou – Foshan - Shunde
4th Leg
After several days in Guangzhou, we were ready to move on. In Canton, we visited Chimelong Safari Park, Yuixie Park, Pearl River Cruise and visited Sifu Wong’s Wake.
The Bus trip to Foshan was very comfortable. The Bus driver had his Cousin as a Jockey, so we had a driver and a tour guide, per say. We nicknamed the two, Cheech and Chong.
The drive to Foshan was relatively quick. After checking in, we walked to the Ancestral Temple and Yip Man Tong, which were only about 300 meters from our Hotel complex. Very convenient!
Unbeknown to us, the next day of our tour would be monumental as we would be visiting Bruce Lee and Chan Wah Shun.
For Dinner that night, we all decided to eat in the Hotel’s Bistro. The food was basic but very palatable.
That night, we all split up and some went shopping while the others went partying.
The prices were again very expensive, so needless to say, I saved my money for shopping in Shenzhen.
The next day we all jumped into the Bus and headed for Shunde to see the Bruce Lee Paradise. While paying our entrance fee at the main gate, a Lady led our group away from the Paradise and headed down a narrow alleyway through an ancient village. Low and behold, we came across a small abode and on the front entrance there said a sign “Bruce Lee Ancestor House”.
WOW! Did that blow my mind! We were all in agog as this was not on the itinerary or planned in any way.
We took some group photos at the entrance then silently walked into the house. The first room we passed was the kitchen, which still had a wood stove with two Woks on top. All the walls were ornate with photos of Bruce Lee and his Family. There was a wooden dummy in one corner, so we all had a go on it, performing several moves and postures. Off to the side of the main room was a bedroom. After some time, we all reluctantly left and walked around the village and back to the Bruce Lee Paradise.
The Paradise was empty, believe it or not!
In 2010, when we arrived the place had thousands of people in attendance. It was actually a Bruce Lee Festival.
This time, in 2012, we had the whole place, about 200 acres to ourselves. What a buzz!
Just a short ride down the road we came across a restaurant surrounded by a lake, so we stopped and had a group banquet. How beautiful was that? The food was so unique. We even had boiled milk and warm Corn juice. Yummmmm!
We located Chan Wah Shun ancestral grace site with relative ease. The driver parked the Bus opposite the grave site in a little village called “Ma Tang Chun”. Walking around the village, we came across Chan Wah Shun’s Ancestral Temple. What a bonus.
The best was yet to come!
As we ambled our way through the village and back to the Coach, a little Lady appeared from nowhere and ushered our group to come and have a look at a kung fu house. She noticed the chinese writing on our club windcheaters, so invited the group to have a look.
As I walked through the front entrance, I noticed a wooden dummy leaning against a wall over to the side. The courtyard was magnificent. So ornate with beautiful flora. The lady led us inside and uttered that this was Wing Chun Grand Master Chan Wah Shun's residence. I am not sure what everyone else thought, but my wife and I were stunned, shocked and blown out.
We were actually standing in Chan Wah Shun's lounge room. Mind boggling!
The lady told us she was the resident cleaner and had been for many years.
She escorted Linda and I upstairs to peer around his private room. What an honour!
Then, to our surprise, she led us to her bedroom where she brought out Chan Wah Shun's long pole and chopper. Linda and I looked at each other in disbelief.
Linda and I gladly took them down stairs to show the group. The lady organized the wooden dummy to be mounted in the middle of the courtyard.
I was in wing chun heaven. Playing with Chan Wah Shun's wooden dummy, long pole and chopper.
Finally, we all walked through the village and crossed the road to climb the 108 steps up to Chan Wah Shun's ancestral grave site.
Walking through the village I realized many kung fu signs on front doors, which led me to believe that this village was a true wing chun village.
next post.........Foshan to Hong Kong, our last leg!

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