(12 Nov 2006, Hainan)
(continued from Five Officials' Temple, Part II)
There were quite a lot of things to see at the Five Officials' Temple. I could not help but awe at the architecture of the place, and how this entire place has managed to survive after so many years. It definitely has seen more of this world than I had.
At the Five Officials' Temple, I saw a starfruit tree for the first time in my life. I liked the way its branches seem to entangle among themselves.
As we walked steadily about the premises, we came to a bridge that would lead us to a new building that was built recently. This building contains exhibits of many of the well-known figures known to the folks in Hainan. I took no particular notice of the bridge until much later. My cousin told me much later that the bridge is called Qiqu Qiao, which literally means a bridge whose path keeps winding and isn't smooth.
There is a reason behind its unique design: As one walks from one end of the bridge to the other end, one is to be reminded that life is never smooth and easy. One may have to experience many twists and turns in life before one reaches one's final destination. What an interesting concept behind the design of this bridge, I thought to myself.
At the exhibition galleries found in the new building, there were exhibits that gave visitors a better understand of the Five Officials (namely: Li Deyu, Li Gang, Li Guang, Zhao Ding and Hu Quan). There was a three-dimensional map that showed the route that each of these five officials had taken when they were being banished to Hainan Island (for speaking up against what they felt were wrong practices by the Emperors of their times).
There were exhibits that gave visitors insights to the lives of each of these five officials, and their contributions to Hainan. Some of the poems of the five officials were also being displayed.
The verses from a poem by Li Gang approximately mean: "If the people could be adequately fed, I am willing to have suffer sickness and have my life-span shortened."
There was also an exhibition gallery meant for well-known personalities from the contemporary days. One of such personalities who was featured in that exhibition gallery was Song Qingling, whose father is a native of Hainan.
One interesting trivial that I saw while I was at the new building was a coconut triplet. From one single coconut fruit, grew three coconut trees with the same genetic make-up.
And I shall end this post with photos of the beautiful sceneries of the Five Officials' Temple. More about my trip to Hainan in my future posts.