The 30th Weifang International Kite Festival. Weifang, Shandong province, China, 2013.

The best part is that I was lucky enough to go to this bright and breathtaking event with one of the leaders of the Kite Community in Weifang – Sun Wenqing (孙文庆)! A great man who is also extremely kind and friendly. Though he spoke dialectal Chinese, I managed to talk to him about the festival with the help of my friend, who is his daughter-in-law 😉

Chinese opera kite3

 

I learnt that dozens of countries arrived to the city specially for these 3 days even and they are competing in teams for the prize. The main point that Sun Wenqing made was that these foreigners and this festival is a great step in international friendship and expressions of kindness and beauty both for the Chinese and the international friends.

As you get to the venue, you pass through a lot of self-made Chinese shops selling kites of unimaginable styles and prices… Still, I was told that the best place to buy a kite would be a factory, where the best kites are made. Then they will last and serve you for years and no wind will tear them apart. In fact, this handicraft has been a means of livelihood for centuries here.

There is a legend that kites were invented in china 2000 years ago and introduced to the west by marco polo.Still, it is believed that the first kite was built by a Chinese philosopher in 230 BC and originally was used for military purposes – in 200 BC a chinese general Han Hsin used a kite to fly over a castle he was besieging to see how far away it was.After that he used the length of the kite line to dig a tunnel so that he could enter the castle).

While the history remains covered in mist, we were flying our own kite – an airplane! My first kite flying in life!

My friend preparing the kite…

Chinese opera kite4

 

Myself, flying the kite with my friend’s son, who in his 4 years of life flew more kites than me!

Chinese opera kite5

 

Chinese opera kite6

 

Did I like kiting? Well, let’s just say that I took my friend’s kite and fly it myself now in the People’s square in the mornings, when all the Chinese are practicing Tai Qi and Kong Fu. The wind is really good in this city.

 

Margarita Rara.

http://www.inativespeaker.com

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