Part of this journey involves finding a fast Internet connection to ‘upload’ photographs. I am starting to think the one I have at the moment comes at too high a price! I am not sure what the word is to describe what is simply a very ‘interesting’ situation at this very moment.
Cheng Hoon Teng is ‘historic’, many tourist visit it each day and when they step through the temple gate and enter the main shrine room it is like stepping back in time. Here is ancient China and Buddhism (as well as a couple of other religions too it would seem) kept alive by the faithful in this town. There is a minor city road at the front of the property and a very major one running along the back. So much traffic on a narrow road. Thankfully the road is only about one and half car widths, + a few motor bikes, wide so crossing it to get to this Internet Cafe was not completely death defying! However now here and connected, embraced as I am by surround sounds, I question the wisdom of slipping out of the back door of the temple in search of fast connectivity.
Let’s see now, the cars, tour buses, motorbike, bicycles, lorries and people on foot pass on two sides within feet of where I sit typing this. The cafe, having walls on only two sides the rest only closed by wooden shutters at night is hot and humid. Just to my left is a water feature, blessed water pouring from a bamboo pipe into a circular stone then cascading into a large pottery bowl. The loud Mexican music from the speaker just above my head is the real test! I see that the temperature is a mere 32c. What I thought was steam pouring from the building I now realize is water being sprayed onto the outside tables which are on the pavement. This, yes this is to keep the customers cool, wonderful!
So there you have it, a block away an ancient temple opens it’s doors to all comers to make their bows and say their prayers, offer joss sticks, light candles and offer oil to keep the eternal light burning. Then here, a couple of hundreds yards through the temple complex, a wireless internet connection. They are called ‘hotspots’ by the way!
The fact that this journey can be shared through the medium of the Internet adds a dimension, of offering I guess, that simply seems ‘good’ to do. It does take working at and I am only so glad and grateful that I am able to continue to type…and remain on my feet! Not both at the same time of course.