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

It was in 1984 that the Weifang International Kite Festival took off and has been attracting more and more attention every year.

Since then Weifang became the kite capital of the world. This year on April 22 I visited the famous mountain Fayanshan (浮烟山) where the event takes place.

The field was divided into parts for amateurs and for professionals, as well as for the “dangerous” kites, as they are called.

The kites differ in shapes and colours, meaning and function… Such a great variety! This event is another example of how modern is mixed with traditional in China, there the former is taking over the latter. The huge contemporary volume kites are more attractive to the eye and of course more visible in the sky.

A Chinese opera face kite

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In fact, I was surprised to find out and witness different flying techniques exercised in different countries! Some just float in the sky aimlessly, some move around, others fly like rockets making beautiful ornaments in the sky…

Check out this kite…

Weifang Chinese Corner.

Margarita

http://www.inativespeaker.com

Reading time: 10 minutes.

Place: Shandong province, Weifang city, Jima road, “SPR COFFEE” café.

Objective: teaching Chinese to foreigners.

Teachers: Chinese native speakers-professional teachers Min and Sandy. Teaching assistants: students from Foreign Languages department in Weifang Univesity.

Schedule: every Wednesday at 7pm.

Entrance fee: a beverage 😉

Weifang is a comparatively small city thus there are not many foreign residents.  Most of that “handful” of foreigners are teachers working in schools and universities. Nevertheless, this city welcomes every newcomer with warmth and hospitality, giving a hand to those lost in translation!

SPR Coffee Chinese Corner is one of the examples of Weifang hospitality. The owner of the coffee shop is a nice lady Min, who had lived in London for over a decade. On her return back to the roots, Min opened her own foreign language school along with a coffee shop that serves good coffee and chocolate which can’t but make you feel like at home. Those who ever lived in China, know what I mean 😉 Though a business lady, Min is extremely hospitable and friendly. She turned her coffee shop into a place where foreigners can hang out, learn Chinese and make friends.

Therefore, driven by a desire to master one of the ancient languages in the world, every Wednesday at 7pm a group of foreigners gathers together in Min’s SPR Coffee.

Let’s see how the “classes” are conducted!