I spent 2 days in the Wutong Mountain Artists Villa area of Shenzhen visiting a friend. It takes about 45 minutes by taxi to get to Wutang Shan from Lohu border. The village is an odd mix of boutique clothing shops, art studios, vegetarian restaurants, and dingy looking local shops (no offense meant to the locals, but the contrast is striking and part of the charm!). It's a worthwhile side trip, because it truly is another world compared to the bustle of Shenzhen. Here's is my morning intention written for my 2nd day there:
I turn an ear to the life of this world: cicadas sing to each to each other in rising waves and rolling hums, bullfrogs belch in the background, and village voices layer laughter over the orchestration of nature. I chose to stay here a second night, on my own, to use the place for inspiration, to walk the streets with camera in hand and phone in pocket taking photos and recording my thoughts. It is its own world here, like a movie set in a off-beat place, where something quirky and magical might happen because the “ordinary” borders the extraordinary. I love the feel of being one-step away from another world, of being on the edge of the unknown. I love the rising wave of possibility even though it falls back into a low hum, or settles into a lull that steals the magic. I know it is life like anywhere else, but it is just this rise and roll that is part of the charm of the place.
I wonder if passages and portals to places are the norm here, like the little tea house on the river accessed through the back of the boutique shop by passing through a tiny kitchen area. It is like a whispered secret, like a passage to a special place that has its own charm. I wonder what passage Wutong Shan Village grants for me or where I will end out if I rise with the wave and walk through the unknown gate. After all, I am just a step away from another world….
© Nick LeForce
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