On a casual evening, I was telling Lao Wu tonight over a beer that I’m having this ridiculously ambitious goal of writing and publishing my second book by 2014. “This is going to be a novel, which setting is the Tai Chi School,” I told him.
After a few meaningful seconds of silence, Lao Wu looked at me in the eyes and replied, “I support you. I’m giving you my moral support. That’s all I can do for now, but I hope one day I can do more.” Very straightforward and encouraging words. Very uncommon practice in the Chinese culture.
“Thank you,” I said. “I really appreciate. It means a lot to me.” This is exactly the kind of situation that reminds me of my limited Chinese language skills. I wish I could have expressed my gratitude to him in its whole extend. Not only his support towards my writing. I wanted to tell him that my life went through a dramatic shift the moment Tai Chi came into it. And that he is a big part of it.
Lao Wu is such an amazing Tai Chi practitioner that when you look at him, you want to become him (or learn Tai Chi and be able to perform like him – and have the same laid-back, fang song, attitude in any circumstances of life).
He is such a great teacher that he manages to make Tai Chi accessible, fascinating, and above all, fun. He makes me want to stick to Tai Chi, while I’m going through all kinds of difficulties and down moments. He is one of the most talented persons I’ve ever met. And he’s only 22 years old, damn!
I told Lao Wu that I wouldn’t have a yin-yang symbol tattooed on the back of my neck if it wasn’t for him. I guess in spite of my poor Chinese, that line said it all.
Lao Wu is Senior Coach at the Yangshuo Tai Chi and Kungfu School. He is Master Fu’s nephew and has been practicing Tai Chi since the age of 15.