Published: May 6th 2010May 6th 2010
Last weekend I headed to Wuxi (pronounced 'woo-she') to hang out with some friends. Wuxi is lovely and green, on the banks of Tai Lake, but not too different from Suzhou (it is after all only a 20 minute train ride away). I had planned to just take it easy as time off from work is rare, but ended up convincing my friend Andrew to trek to the "Big Buddha" with me. Great decision, as it was a gorgeous day (the sky was actually blue instead of its normal concrete color) and a lot of fun. Ling Shan, as it is officially called, is a huge complex of Buddhist art, temples, and a giant conference hall. And a really REALLY big buddha statue.
The place was huge and it took us 3 hours to see everything. A huge fountain in the center stages a "bathing of the baby buddha" ceremony. The lotus flower opens slowly, dramatic music playing on the loudspeakers, and reveals a grinning buddha that is then doused by the fountain. We climbed up to the big buddha's toes, saw lots of smaller buddhas, and checked out the conference hall. Apparently it was built for a big Buddhist convention
held in Wuxi a couple years ago...the inside was incredible! It looked like a cathedral.
As lovely at the trip was I think I'm mostly just happy that it is finally sunny and warm again. It's been a looong winter.
There are more photos below