Awakening of the dragon

23 02 2012

Second day of the second month according to the lunar calendar, and today it is the day of the awakening of the dragon (yes, insect, a big hungry fire-blowing one.. still insect for Chinese!):

Second day of the Tibetan new year celebration as well, and I saw on TV that more than 2thousand people celebrated with a traditional dance (called “Happy Losar”).. a mix of performers and normal people joining in one of the largest squares of Lhasa.

The spirit of the dance is holding hands and form some concentric circles.. a good hope for all people that should become able to live in peace among each other..

And today (no better day) I want to feature the blog of a fellow Aikidoka and blogger:

The First Dragon Rider

Lantern festival

6 02 2012

Last day of Chinese New Year celebrations: 15th day started in the early morning with several firecrackers. Not like the 5th day mayhem that I remember very well from last, but also this morning the sounds started around 6am, if not earlier!

Today it is the Lantern festival, (元宵节, Yuánxiāo jié): I do not think I got at home any tāngyuán, 汤圆, but the market close to my home has some frozen versions, with red bean filling. That I like!

More difficult to get or make a lantern: I’m just back from Europe and I do not want to risk to burn down my apartment!! 😉

Anyway, happy Lantern festival everybody!


lantern festival 2012

Best drink for 2011!

4 01 2012

During Christmas in Chengdu I had the chance to taste a new easy drink: warm coke with ginger. Since then, once back home, I have been making it almost every evening!!! It is a little cheating, since I tried the drink so close to the end of the year and actually made it mainly these extremely cold days, in 2012.. but who cares!

I love ginger, also it is very good for my rheumatoid arthritis.

Food and herbs according to Chinese medicine and traditions categorize as cold or warm, according to the effect they have on the body. Rheumatoid arthritis for Chinese medicine can present different aspects: factors of Wind, Cold, Heat, and/or Dampness. According to the Traditional Chinese Medicine doctor I visited more often, I am affected by cold factors.

Ginger is a warming food aliment.

Boiled coke and ginger!

..and I see it is also good to fight a cold..


11 11 2011

What a combination!

The perfect Single’s Day ever!!

Today it is a Chinese traditional “festival”, very popular especially among university students: 光棍节 (guāng gùn jié), so called Singles Day or One’s Day.

It is tradition to eat “1”-shaped 油条, yóutiáo, that i liked a lot, especially for breakfast, with some soup. Not sure i’ll manage to find some tonight when I will go out from work!

How will I spend the evening anyway?

Together with my girlfriend, of course 😉

Quite funny that last year, during this period it was so difficult to “read” my gf thoughts that very often I came to thinking we were over.. and still we are together after more than 1 year.. probably because, as for Chinese in general, when I do not understand I do to care anymore! If it is necessary I understand for sure, then the fact will be presented or explained differently 🙂

Perfect recipe for life.. it works both ways..

Anyway, happy single’s day folks! 光棍节快乐!!!!

Walking normally.. no watermelon knee!

20 09 2011

[In other words: Fighting my rheumatoid arthritis update]

After more than one month from showing the symptoms of rheumatoid arthritis, RA, and a about 4 weeks from being diagnosed with this disease, things are going much better. The swelling in the right knee and right ankle is almost disappeared, being the ankle more problematic. In fact, right ankle and foot showed swelling much longer than the knee. Even if at the beginning all the pain and swelling were in knee, with time they both moved south to the foot. Especially the swelling worried me big time (hey, the picture is little disgusting, no need to click it if you don’t want!):

6115630951_0dd6ab8397_z Read the rest of this entry »

Happy mid-autumn festival

12 09 2011

Zhōngqiū jié kuàilè! !

Happy mid-autumn festival

From the top: mooncake, the moon, 中 (中秋=mid-autumn)

Wet mid-autumn!

9 09 2011

For the second year I do not expect the mid-autumn festival (中秋节, Zhōngqiū Jié) to be dry.. and for the second year, no chance to see a big full moon, as it should be on Monday!

But even if I can’t see the moon, I’m sure I’ll see several mooncakes, 月饼(yuè bĭng), that I discovered to love!!

Last year I took them to Italy and Vienna, to share with some European friends, and I have been a little surprised that they had not been very successful! Not too big of a pity: my father, like me, liked them very much, so they did not go wasted!! 😉

This year I even found several mroe interesting tastes for mooncakes: typical are red bean (with and without egg), lotus (with and without egg).. but this year I discovered (ok, 潘蕾 helped me to discover!) dates, chestnut, 5 seeds and then the very special ones with cappuccino, chocolate and coffee taste!!

Chestnuts ar really common over here. The summer left its place to autumn weather so fast that it is already a couple of weeks that you can see chestnut sellers around the city. I always loved chestnut, but in Norway I never bought them (quite expensive). In some ways they are more memories of my youth, in Biella, walking to the center and buying caldarroste.. but I remember it was already November, if not December!

chestnut seller

traditional handheld scale

FUNNY THING OF THE DAY – As my Italian friend who lives now in Trnondheim was commenting at the picture link, the price is different from Italy or Norway!! The amount of chestnut in the picture came at 12 yuan, but you can find also cheaper ones!! These were really big ones.. and sooooooo gooooooood!!! Ah.. Chinese prices.. always a shock when compared to European ones!