Incredible contrast with yesterday: a lovely sunny, blue sky day. So made the most of it and got on my bike to explore Beijing, which included a visit to the Confucius Temple, which was beautiful, tranquil... and a little bit boring. Chinese temples - Buddhist, Taoist or Confucian alike - are all well and good but I find them rather regimented, grid-like, with not a lot in them. Is it that we westerners are so used to cathedrals & churches being more like castles, palaces, stately homes... indeed museums - full of educational 'stuff'?
Chinese temples are also 'visitor destinations' but seem more like places to simply 'be' rather than to interact with any content. Whatever, it was a pleasant, quiet hour.
In the evening I attended the opening night of Beijing Dance Festival featuring Janis Claxton Dance Company and Willy Tsao's LTDX. Janis has been coming to China regularly following a BC grant and tonight was the culmination of a 3-month collaboration called Songs: three pieces set to the music of Gorecki. It was very good, and interesting to compare the two sets of dancers: the gamin-like Chinese female dancers contrasted with the more muscly Brits, and more subtle differences like technique, movement and feeling. Did this have anything to with Confucius? Probably not.