November 2017

Due to Covid-19 related international shipping issues, the shop will be closed until the pandemic is under control. Please take care of yourself and stay safe!

陋室铭 Epigraph on my Humble Abode with a Jinhao Fountain Pen

Experimenting with my new Jinhao pen model 450-9 (this particular model is called “乌云” meaning "Dark Clouds"). It has a bent nib and I am using a shimmery peacock green ink with gold powder.

The calligraphy(yes, I know I need moar practice) is an excerpt from 陋室铭 (Epigraph on my Humble Abode) by Liu Yuxi 刘禹锡 (Tang dynasty).

山不在高,有仙则名。 水不在深,有龙则灵。(rough translation of mine)

A mountain needn't be high;

It is famous so long as there is an immortal on it.

The waters needn't be deep;

It has spiritual powers so long as there is a dragon in them.

小雪 (Xiaoxue) Minor Snow 22 November

小雪 (Xiaoxue) meaning "Minor Snow" in the second winter solar term under the traditional Chinese lunar calendar. It marks the beginning of snowfall in North China and there is a folk custom of making preserved pork and sausages at this time so that they would be ready to eat in time for the Spring Festival. In the south, some areas will eat glutinous rice cakes.

Nostalgic Traditional Singapore Chinese Biscuit 耳朵饼 (ear biscuit)

Ear Biscuit

This is a kind of old-fashioned spicy but sweet Chinese biscuit popular in my childhood. The specks on top are white sesame. If you are from Singapore or Malaysia and of a certain age, you might recognize them though I'm not sure if youngsters still eat them nowadays. They are called 耳朵饼 ("ear biscuits") because they are spiral-shaped like ears. I think the spicy taste might be from Chinese five-spice powder. I never really liked them as a kid because I've always hated the weirdly spicy taste.

Here's a recipe from someone else:

Ear Biscuits Recipe

Start of Winter 立冬 (Lidong) 7 Nov

 

立冬 (Lidong) is one of the 24 solar terms under the Chinese lunar calendar and marks the start of winter as its name suggests. Under the old agricultural society, it's time to rest, prepare the farm for winter and eat nourishing food for good health to fortify oneself against the coming cold. In Northern China, it is customary to eat dumplings on this day. In Southern China where the weather is warmer, meat/fowl/fish is eaten.