That's it. The last two "laowai" (foreigner) bros had to leave DCMAS. As Jakob left already a month ago to go back to his motherland, it left just the two of us to represent the western world in the school and more generally in Shen Qiu. Time seemed to speed up a little during the last weeks and we started to realize that there were things we wouldn't have the time to learn, thus giving us extra reasons and motivation to come back sooner or later. Apparently the idea of coming back was a given for our teacher Laoshi Li who kept talking about what we'd learn next year 'till the very last moment. Of course, we both think about coming back, but as we've both been "travelling" (or rather studing abroad) for a good while now we also have to begin thinking of more down to earth realities - such as our budget.
These three months in Laoshi Li's school gave us a glimpse of what one can find in China when searching for traditional kung-fu. We're well-aware of the luck we've had to meet such a "master" as Li Shi Quan. It's not granted to anyone to find somebody like him in a country as big and populated as China. A cradle of many schools and kung-fu teachers, clouded by smoke and mirrors, especially if one doesn't really speak this crazy chinese language. Futhermore, we found out that for this kind of teacher here in China, the idea of teaching white boys isn't always easily accepted by the outside world.
Therefore, we're extremely thankful to Laoshi Li as he accepted the challenge of teaching laowais in a town and a culture where these skills are not necessarily given away to the first stranger. We understand that he most probably had to stand up for his opinions and for his will of teaching us and for that our respect is even deeper. We paid to learn from him (for a service so to say) and from a westerner's point of view it would only seem fair enough whoever we are. Money talks so to say. But one has to understand that things in China definitely doesn't work the same way as in Europe or America. It becomes even more complicated when it's about something that falls under chinese traditional "laws". It's hard to say but perhaps by teaching us Laoshi Li have been looked down upon in the Ba Gua (and Chinese traditional kung-fu) circle; on the other hand he may also have given himself a kind of charisma.
Our three months of summer training came to an end on the 20th of September and it was with a hint of melancholy that we had our last training, our last breakfast Shen Qiu style, our last walk around the small town and our last crazy traditional lunch well-watered with baijiu and all the "Shen Qiu VIP"-status that we have enjoyed all the time here. From now on, we both will have to find out what's going to be our own next move. We're back in Zhengzhou and we'll most probably take a little while thinking of new plans and hopefully keep training together a little back in Bi Shan Gang park where it all started.