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Posted on Jan 09, 2014 at 06:40 PM


To me, some items are cherished so much that it’s hard to discard them, especially after a long time possession. At first sight I fell in love with these items and regarded them as treasures. Owning them is a moderate pleasure and a huge satisfaction as well. There are several items in my life, gotten by chance and lost in the flux of life, to leave me endlessly missing them.


One: Zheng

I can’t tell the exact time when attracted by Zheng, just remember being hit by the distinct traits: the lingering charm of its sound, the elegancy of its slim and simple structure, and the refined taste of its dark color. Compared with Pipa’s, the sound of Zheng displays less intensity and more mildness, delivering an artistic conception resonated with the audience. Compared with Erhu’s, the touching tone of Zheng implies less grief, sentimental but not being heartbroken. Although I was fond of Zheng, I never played it, engaged in study and trifles instead ( an excuse? I guess).


In 2010 when I lived in Shanghai, the opportunity of playing Zheng finally arrived. Recovered from a 2 month-long illness (It was severe cough caused by the feeling of heartbreak and it was such a pain that consumed my vigor a lot), like the rebirth of phoenix from the fire, I was in a simplest mood ever since and tried to ignore all distractions in the life. During the recovery process I gained more insights of the life and society, and believed in the principle of ShunQiZiRan (let things run its course). The reason for my feeling of hurt was my disappointment to the current social circumstances and public opinions, for example, some people spread the rumor for their own interests which stirred the society and brought the nation into a chaos, while others blindly followed the rumor without judging it discreetly. At that time I struggled to keep calm in spite of the severity of the outside world. It occurred to me that the life was short and it wasn’t wise to give up hobbies for the sake of the pursuit of material goals such as fame and money etc. If you had any hobby, just enjoy it. So I began to learn Zheng-playing from Ms. Zhu. She chose Longfeng(Dragon &Phoenix, a brand from Yangzhou)for me to start, the one decorated with carvings of ancient carriage. I liked it very much. It was a pleasant experience every time I went to her home for study. She was kind and played Zheng well. Under her instruction of over ten classes, I could play YuZhouChangWan(the song of fishers in the evening ) on my own. Of course, I haven’t played at a professional level so far, however, playing a whole song on Zheng to entertain myself was such a delight for me. When I sat at it, wrapped my nails and began to play, my heart was instantly as peaceful as the deep green lake, where rippled by the breeze in the sound of Zheng. At that moment, the hullabaloo around me and pains of the life were totally drowned by the lake water, no chance to hide or escape from. Even the air in the room seemed to become lively, dancing between light and shadow naughtily. During that period of time, I led an orderly life: two hours of Zheng playing in the morning, reading or blogging in the afternoon, and a walk to the Zhongshan Park in the evening.


In September I went to Cambridge to study and my favorite Zhen was carried with me. Its package for the flight was a tough task. I wrapped it with a blanket plus thick plastic layers. When I stepped out of the arrival hall of the Heathrow Airport in London with heavily packaged Zheng on my luggage trolley, I immediately caught curious attention from the crowd. HaHa. OH, my God. I called a taxi and the driver had to adjust the seat to place Zheng in the car. However, despite I took Zheng to UK over a long international journey, I eventually couldn’t play it as expected. I had a full class schedule and back home late in the evening, so I wouldn’t play it in case of disturbing neighbors. Was it possible to play it on the greens in the park at weekends? No, the weather of UK was notorious for being windy, overcast and rainy in the autumn and winter. So, I ended up sighing to my Zheng on numerous nights, which stood quietly in the corner of my bedroom.


Considering the possible damage to Zheng during another long international journey, I decided to transact it before my return to China. Thanks to Mr. Yang and Mr. Jiang, I left Zheng with the Student Art Society of Cambridge. The day when Zheng was taken away, I took photos for it, so sad that I regretted to part it. Recalling the days of living on Jiangsu Road in Shanghai 2010, I regarded this Zheng as an old friend, who accompanied me in the tough time and supported me to go through hardships. Playing Zheng on a daily basis helped to shelter me from current annoyance for a moment, which got me refreshed and able to retain strengths and vigor to move on.


Life is a piece of dance. You need to find the right partner to make it beautiful.
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