Dragon, Tiger, Phoenix and Crane.

September 15, 2009

This sure brings back a strong feeling of nostalgia ….. Sitting around, sipping tea and hearing stories about kung fu from an era long passed …… except that this time around instead of Singapore, I find myself on a island somewhere in the mighty Rajang River of Sarawak in a kung fu school that is enclosed by small pockets of farmlands and virgin jungle.

But kung fu stories are kung fu stories regardless of time and space I guess. Here in Sarawak, the Chinese were up against head-hunting native tribes and kung fu skill was the only thing standing in between and during those pioneering days, it’s really nothing more than survival of the fittest – law of the jungle.

Talking to another historian recently, Dr. Paul Yong, I was told that many early Chinese immigrants were in Borneo to mine the abundant gold found here and kung fu experts were the insurance needed to ensure safety of those involved in this enterprise.

Like I said repeatedly, it’s not a game or sport, its real – life or death real!

That night, under the canopy of tall durian trees and stars, Master Ting took me through the history of his Fong Yang Quan and the close connection with Hakka’s “Dragon Tiger” Kung Fu.

At one point, we realized that words aren’t enough and he got up and started illustrating using one of his forms.

And that’s when I spotted a “hok chiu” or “Crane Hand” technique in his form ….. hmmm, a White Crane technique in Fong Yang?

That also became the call for me to get up and start some “wings flapping”…..hahahaha…

So, Sarawak Borneo, the Rajang River, headhunters, Fuzhou, Dragon/Tiger and then the Crane ……. And folks think I live a boring life hahahahaha ……

Welllll, here’s a short clip of what happened that evening …. In Fuzhou…..

And for other pics of the Rajang River and Sibu click here.

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