Tuesday, August 12, 2008

My B-day in China

It’s my Birthday today, wow, here I am in china working on my sculpture and on top of that I have been given a very nice gift, yep, the committee is accepting my proposal to create the second sculpture. I found this out before lunch and have met with the metal fabrication team to compile a materials list. We all seem to be on the same page and now it is up to me to come up with copy cut sheets for them to use. 4mm thick stainless for the side sections and 2mm for the relief faces front and back, and it is high grade 316 stainless steel. I’m really exited, these two works will be beautiful complements to one another.
There will be no work in the afternoon because of the visit to the park and the dinner talent show that the interpreters are putting on. Some of the artists are performing as well, we were all looking forward to an afternoon off. After lunch we all piled onto two buses and off we went. First stop a beautifully forested park surrounding a man made lake. We went on a nature walk into the woods and found the lake, it was cool by Saipan standards and I really enjoyed it, as usual there was great conversations that Chun Hua and I engage in. No one knew that it is my B-day…I am thinking. (pic of Chun Hua, Lu and committee member). From the park we piled into the buses and made our way to a very pleasant restaurant, a sort of eatery and winery combination. As soon as we had been seated, the food began coming and coming, “heaps” (as Samual Ludden my Kiwi friend would say). The interpreters had sang a welcoming song about the Olympics, the excitement was thick in the air, this was the day before the opening ceremony in Beijing and it looked they were ready to bust. The performance was great and there was a real spirit fun friendship in the air.
I found out at soon that the committee had been making plans, I have no doubt that Chun Hua was involved to some degree, right after, here comes the three layer cake and a bouquet of flowers…yep for me. Wasai!! (wow) I was surprised, the song was sung and the cake was cut, and I made a few toasts to our hosts and to my fellow artists and friends. How cool is that!! B-day in China WASAI!!!. The performances continued by students and artists, from musical instruments, to solo singers, to group singing and bongos played as back-up by Ryan from the island of Aruba. Of particular interest to me, was Chun Hua’s solo performance of a Korean dance which she learned because her home village is just across the river from North Korea. See the picture. She is quite the talent and I enjoyed her dance immensely.


Harry Blalock said...

Happy Birthday old guy! It looks like you had quite the celebration over there and that things are going great! Congratulations on having your second project approved as well. I hope you're soaking it all in and have tons of stories to tell us all when you get back.

Barry Wonenberg said...

Two beautiful works of art, wow. Congratulations on your latest achievement to build another piece. It will be very satisfying to see the completed sculptures side by side.

What a birthday party! You had a golden celebration indeed, what with all the recognition from everyone, a walk through a peaceful wooded area, dine in a quaint restaurant, a two tier cake, and live performance to boot! Are you sure you didn't tell anyone about your birthday? Indeed, the whole day sounds wonderful. Happy birthday again dear husband. Enjoy and carpe diem! Maggie

Bo said...

How cool is that!! To be celebrated in such a fashion from your new found friends. I have been watching the Olympics pretty regular and I’m so impressed on what wonderful, hospitable people the Chinese are. They are very accommodating, warm and have a total flair of hosting-your writings also bring this to light. Not many people get the opportunity to see and appreciate different cultures as you have. We are all not so different. Thank you for bringing this to the rest of us to appreciate. I can’t wait to see both of your sculptures completed. I don’t recall you ever working with stainless steel not to mention 316 stainless. That should be a different endeavor for you. Stainless is like what almost 3 X’s harder then Bronze and melts at a much higher temperature. (See I did go to school that day). You are surrounded in beauty or as you say a (b-e-a-utiful) place with the love of the arts. What is the age of most of the art in the gardens surrounding you??? Keep on writing-lovin checkin in on ya.
Love Always,
Your Sis

Barry Wonenberg said...

Sweeeeet! I'm so happy to hear you had a great 50th birthday, dad. It sounds like you've made a lot of great, new friends as well. Chun Hua seems really nice, like a daughter to you. Hmmm.. Remember that Corrie and I are your REAL daughters. haha.. I'm just playing. Love ya, dad.