Day 10: Happy Embroidery and the Sounds of the Village
As many people in Xizhou referenced Happy Embroidery over the course of their 3-5's, I had decided to set up a time for a class today and arrived promptly at 2:15. Ms. He and Ms. He (no relation) had already advised that I either choose a pre-printed embroidery pattern or draw one myself with a pen, because I was unsatisfied with most of the prints there (extremely picky, I am), I chose the latter.
I had done research online and was rather indecisive, my ideas ranged from traditional Chinese bird patterns to Celtic symbols to Buddhist mandalas. However, I finally decided on a wolf embroidery print I had found online with a moon in the background and a vaguely tattoo-like thing on the side. I drew this on fabric (quite impressively if I do say so myself) and began sewing. Both Ms. He's guided me in my choosing of colors and insisted that my tattoo symbol be a gradient instead of the original single-colored fill. I decided that it would be blue and sewed approximately half of it with a great deal of help from the two lovely ladies.
Due to the upcoming hike, I will not visit Happy Embroidery again until Friday but am anxiously awaiting my next trip there.
The sounds in Xizhou are unlike any other.
The gentle breath of the wind in your ears and the tentative smile in the light trill of migrating birds. I hear the sound of people, people dissimilar to those in Shanghai. I hear the ones who live in serenity and equanimity, the ones who live and love and die in restful, unselfish good. I hear the sound of leaves fluttering in the breeze, graceful like ballet dancers on a beautiful, sunlit stage. I hear music in my head but not in my ears, the laughter of my friends.
But most of all, I hear silence.
I hear the silence of the stars, the silence of the moon.
I hear the silence of night and darkened rooms.
I hear the silence of strength and the silence of pain.
For it is the sounds that cannot be heard, that are the ones worth the most.