Translation (by 劉昊恩)
《A Blossoming Tree》 By Xi Mu-Rong
Wish we could meet
during my fairest years
For this, I have prayed to the Buddha
for some five hundred years
Prayed that some fate
would bring us together
So Buddha transformed me
into a tree,
a path you should seek
Beneath the bright sunlight
I bloom cautiously
Each blossom embodying
a yearning desire
As you approach now
Please heed carefully
The trembling foliage
sings my passion so keen
And as you walk by, with
no more than a glance
Faltering behind you
softly to the ground
Are not falling petals,
but my withering heart.
Love is a tricky thing. What is love? Why do some people find it so soon and are so sure about it. Whereas, some other people encounter endless obstacles and run around in circles, and still don’t find love?
It is all about timing. Love is about meeting the right person at the right time.
If we meet the person too soon, we might be too young to appreciate love, we haven’t learnt the importance of respect and compromise yet. We have our youthful high hopes and dreams and pursuits, we think we have many years ahead of us, and someone better will come along. Right? But someone better probably wouldn’t come along.
If we meet the person too late, at an age we are ready to settle down and we have learnt respect and compromise, the person might no longer be there waiting.
This is the reason why all the romance movies believe in fate. There is always one defining moment in your life, out of all the places you could possibly be in the world, you were there at that time and you meet who you meet. You better hope it’s the right moment and the right person!
The Chinese mythology believe in reincarnation. People believe our lovers in the past life will find us in this life and we continue the love we had left of. This explains love at first sight and de ja vu – when you meet someone for the first time, have you had the feeling you have seen them before? Do you feel you ‘understand’ them and are connected to them?
“緣” means fate and destiny, and you would pray to Buddha to bring you the right person. In the mean time, we wait and hope we meet our destined lover at our peak – our fairest years, when we still have faith in love, when we still have the courage to seize love, when our eyes still speak of innocence and radiance.
In the poem, Buddha grants the poet’s wish to find her past lover. Buddha transforms her into a tree and places her alongside a path where her love will walk by in this life. As the poet’s love approaches her, the trembling leaves express her calling for him, if he were to feel her presence, he would notice the leaves sings her passion, the 500 years she has prayed for them to meet again, the years she has stood by this path waiting and hoping for this fateful encounter.
The heart-wrenching part of this poem comes when the poet’s love walks past, without hesitation, and unaware of his past love’s longing. As he walks away, behind him, the petals fall as the poet’s dreams and hopes crush and fall to the ground.
Serendipity May 16, 2010
The Return of the Condor Heroes (1995) May 15, 2010
The second instalment of the Condor Hero Trilogy – it lacks the first instalment’s captivating storyline and superb character development, but most people like it because of it’s a visual treat with the gorgeous Louis Koo and Carmen Lee – it is a classic LOVE story. Not my type but I have to admit, damn they look good together!
…is the best of the Condor Hero trilogy, I heart Julian (Chi lam) Cheung and Athena Chu as the lead characters Guo Jing and Huang Rong, respectively.
Thank God I Have You May 8, 2010
SKIN CARE AND MAKE UP – FACE
Avène Thermal Spring Water
The thermal water is rich in silicate and trace elements soothes, calms and softens; protects and purifies skin. It is low salt mineral content (NoCl, 207 mg/l) adapted to sensitive skin will not dry out the skin, pH 7.5 won’t sting or burn skin. Can be sprayed on open, clean wounds.
Naturally bacteriologically pure
Constant temperature of 75ºF, 25.6ºC
The water is the only thermal spring water directly connected from the source to the Hydrotherapy Center and the manufacturing plant next to the Center. The first time it sees the light is when it touches your skin!
Creme de la Mer
Crème de la Mer’s transformational and efficacious results have inspired a global following. With use, skin appears visibly smoother, lines and wrinkles are reduced and even the driest complexions are soothed on contact. Its benefits speak for themselves and continue to generate loyal devotees around the world.
La Mer Treatment Fluid Foundation
Engineered with weightless color and La Mer’s remarkable skincare benefits, this silken, lightweight fluid has the power to transform the complexion. Gemstones capture light energy to create a translucent color palette, optically erasing imperfections to reveal a naturally flawless complexion.
Created with a rare blue algae transformed through La Mer’s exclusive bio-fermentation process, a Blue Algae Lift Ferment along with precious marine and plant actives immediately add radiance while working continuously to lift the skin, restoring a lasting firmness, clarity and brightness. Skin’s ability to renew itself is greatly enhanced as it is trained to sustain a smoother, softer, more resilient appearance. Flexible medium coverage brings skin a naturally luminous finish. Protects with SPF15.
Egyptian Magic All Purpose Skin Cream
This product is a phenomenal healing balm with legendary healing powers due to its mixture of all natural ingredients derived only from living plants and organisms. Cleopatra is rumoured to have secretly used this concoction to enhance her beautiful skin and hair.
The magical blend can be used to heal burns and sunburn; blisters; cuts and scrapes; chicken pox marks and recently acquired stretch marks; to relieve razor bumps and ingrown hairs; insect bites; to heal skin blemishes; skin discolouration; dry, itchy and ashy skin; diaper and skin rash; skin fungus; hemorrhoids; chapped lips; athlete’s foot; cracked skin; dry and itchy scalp; as a leg and facial shaving cream; aftershave lotion; for sun and wind protection; body moisturiser for even the most sensitive areas; hot body massage oil; cuticle oil and hot oil hair masque.
Kosmea Certified Organic Rosehip Oil
Nature’s first aid kit for the skin and a fantastic anti-ageing beauty oil!
Rich in essential fatty acids, vitamins and antioxidants, this easily-absorbed oil is a real treat for the skin. It may help smooth wrinkles, even out skin tone, reduce appearance of scars, moisturise and soothe dry skin, nourish and hydrate ageing skin, balance oily skin and reduce the appearance of blemishes. Great for giving that glow to dull, tired skin!
Cetaphil Gentle Skin Cleanser
Originally developed by dermatologists for especially sensitive skin, Cetaphil Gentle Skin Cleanser is a soap substitute that preserves your skin’s natural protective oils. So it softens your skin as it gently cleanses. Independent clinical tests using Cetaphil Gentle Skin Cleanser undiluted by water have shown it to be one of the gentlest non-soap cleansers. Its special formulation won’t sting your eyes and can remove light make-up without clogging pores. Developed to be used with or without water, Cetaphil Gentle Skin Cleanser is pH balanced and lanolin and fragrance-free.
Dermalogica Daily Microfoliant
SKIN CARE AND MAKE UP – LIPS
DRAMAS/PRIME TIME TELEVISION
1. Michael Scofield and Sara Tancredi – Prison Break (US)
Michael Scofield: You kept it.
Dr. Sara Tancredi: Kept what?
Michael Scofield: The flower.
Dr. Sara Tancredi: Well, I’m a packrat. I never throw anything out.
Michael Scofield: [looks around the spotless infirmary] Yeah, well this clutter. It’s… overwhelming.
Dr. Sara Tancredi: You should see my apartment.
Michael Scofield: Woah. We haven’t even had our first date yet and you’re already inviting me in. I thought you were a nice girl.
Dr. Sara Tancredi: Oh Michael, we all know nice girls finish last.
[motions for Michael to lift up his shirt]
Michael Scofield: So where do you finish?
Dr. Sara Tancredi: Depends on where I start. Deep breath.
Sara Tancredi: Scofield, I don’t know what you’re used to but anything short of a Filet Mingon isn’t gonna cut with me”
Michael Scofield: It’s a date.
Sara: What do you want from me Michael?
Michael: I need you to do something for me?
Michael: Wait for me…It won’t always be like this, this room, this place.
Sara: Untill then I can’t. We Can’t. I can’t and I’ve got to go…
2. Charles (Chuck) Bass and Blair Waldorf – Gossip Girl (US)
Chuck: I’m honoured to be playing even a small role in your deflowering.
Blair: You’re disgusting.
Chuck: Yes, I am, so why be shy?
Chuck: It’s a facility for the disturbed or addicted.
Blair: You must have your own wing.
Chuck: You don’t get nearly enough credit for your wit.
Blair: Chuck Bass, I do believe all your years of underage boozing and womanizing have finally paid off. Truly, I am proud.
Chuck: And you are my toughest critic.
Chuck: Victory party, here, tomorrow night.
Blair: I wouldn’t miss it.
Blair: Don’t be nervous, he’s gonna love it.
Blair: I do not believe this!
Chuck: How do you think I feel? I haven’t slept. I feel sick, like there’s something in my stomach. Fluttering.
Blair: Break a leg.
Chuck: I think I just did.
Chuck: I was in love with Blair and I’m sorry.
Chuck: Let’s take it slow this time. Do it right.
Blair: Chuck Bass is a romantic. Who knew?
Chuck: Well, now you do. That’s all that matters.
Chuck: You’re lying.
Blair: I am not!
Chuck: Your eyes are doing that thing where they don’t match your mouth.
Blair: I wasn’t aware that robots got jealous. Did they update your software while I was away?
Blair: You are disgusting. I hate you.
Chuck: Then why are you still holding my hand?
Blair: You here to gloat?
Chuck: Over what?
Blair: Well you won. Pop the champagne.
Chuck: I didn’t win.
Blair: Then why does it feel like I lost?
Chuck: The reason we can’t say those three words to each other, isn’t because they aren’t true.
Chuck: Look i’d rather wait. Maybe in the future…
Blair: I suppose there could be some excruciating pleasure in that.
Blair: Limos and virgins, your specialty!
Chuck: Just so you know, while there are few things I consider sacred, the back of the limo is one of them.
Blair: Chuck! Stop! Don’t go. Or if you have to leave, let me come with you.
Chuck: I appreciate the concern.
Blair: No. You don’t. You don’t appreciate anything today. But I don’t care. Whatever you’re going through, I want to be there for you.
Chuck: We talked about this. You are not my girlfriend.
Blair: But I am me. And you are you. We’re Chuck and Blair. Blair and Chuck. The worst thing you’ve ever done—the darkest thought you’ve ever had—I will stand by you through anything.
Chuck: And why would you do that?
Blair: Because I love you.
Chuck: Well that’s too bad.
Blair: You can’t run, you have to stay here and here it this time. Chuck Bass, I love you. I love you so much it consumes me. I love you and I know you love me too. Tell me you love me and everything we’ve done, all the gossip and the lies and the hurt will have been for something. Tell me it was for something.
Chuck: Maybe it was, but it’s not anymore.
Chuck: You were right. I was a coward running away again, but everywhere I went, you caught up with me. So I had to come back.
Blair: I want to believe you, but I can’t. You hurt me too many times.
Chuck: You can believe me this time.
Blair: Oh. That’s it?
Chuck: I love you too.
Blair: But can you say it twice? No i’m serious, say it twice!
Chuck: I love you, I love you, that’s three, four, I love you.
Chuck: I’m Chuck Bass. And I told you I love you. You’re saying I’m easier to win over than a bunch of pseudo-intellectual homesick malcontents. You’d really insult me like this?
Blair: That’s not how it is.
Chuck: That’s exactly how it is. So the next time you forget you’re Blair Waldorf, remember I’m Chuck Bass. And I love you.
Blair: Your real mother would never turn her back on a chance to know you.
Chuck: I don’t have a real mother Blair. I never will.
Blair: That doesn’t mean you’re alone. I love you Chuck, and I’ll always be your family.
NOVELS AND ITS MOVIE/DRAMA ADAPTATIONS
1. Heathcliff and Catherine Earnshaw – Wuthering Heights (Emily Bronte)
“It would degrade me to marry Heathcliff now; so he shall never know how I love him: and that, not because he’s handsome, Nelly, but because he’s more myself than I am. Whatever our souls are made of, his and mine are the same; and Linton’s is as different as a moonbeam from lightning, or frost from fire.”
“My love for Linton is like the foliage in the woods; time will change it, I’m well aware, as winter changes the trees. My love for Heathcliff resembles the eternal rocks beneath–a source of little visible delight, but necessary. Nelly, I am Heathcliff! He’s always, always in my mind–not as a pleasure, any more than I am always a pleasure to myself, but as my own being.”
“If all else perished, and he remained, I should still continue to be; and if all else remained, and he were annihilated, the universe would turn to a mighty stranger: I should not seem a part of it.”
“Kiss me again, but don’t let me see your eyes! I forgive what you have done to me. I love my murderer–but yours! How can I?”
“You teach me how cruel you’ve been – cruel and false. Why do you despise me? Why did you betray your own heart, Cathy? I have not one word of comfort. You deserve this. You have killed yourself. Yes, you may kiss me, and cry, and wring out my kisses and tears; they’ll blight you – they’ll damn you. You loved me–then what right had you to leave me? What right–answer me–for the poor fancy you felt for Linton? Because misery, and degradation and death, and nothing that God or Satan could inflict would have parted us, you, of your own will, did it. I have not broken your heart–you have broken it; and in breaking it, you have broken mine.”
“‘And I pray one prayer–I repeat it till my tongue stiffens–Catherine Earnshaw, may you not rest as long as I am living; you said I killed you–haunt me, then! The murdered DO haunt their murderers, I believe. I know that ghosts HAVE wandered on earth. Be with me always–take any form–drive me mad! only DO not leave me in this abyss, where I cannot find you! Oh, God! it is unutterable! I CANNOT live without my life! I CANNOT live without my soul!'”
My old enemies have not beaten me; now would be the precise time to revenge myself on their representatives-I could do it, and none could hinder me. But where is the use? I don’t care for striking, I can’t take the trouble to raise my hand.
2. Fitzwilliam Darcy and Elizabeth Bennett – Pride and Prejudice (Jane Austen)
“Vanity and pride are different things, though the words are often used synonymously. A person may be proud without being vain. Pride relates more to our opinion of ourselves, vanity to what we would have others think of us.”
“I do assure you that I am not one of those young ladies (if such young ladies there are) who are so daring as to risk their happiness on the chance of being asked a second time. I am perfectly serious in my refusal. You could not make me happy, and I am convinced that I am the last woman in the world who could make you so.”
“You are mistaken, Mr. Darcy, if you suppose that the mode of your declaration affected me in any other way, than as it spared the concern which I might have felt in refusing you, had you behaved in a more gentlemanlike manner.”
“You could not have made the offer of your hand in any possible way that would have tempted me to accept it.”
“From the very beginning— from the first moment, I may almost say— of my acquaintance with you, your manners, impressing me with the fullest belief of your arrogance, your conceit, and your selfish disdain of the feelings of others, were such as to form the groundwork of disapprobation on which succeeding events have built so immovable a dislike; and I had not known you a month before I felt that you were the last man in the world whom I could ever be prevailed on to marry.”
“She is tolerable, but not handsome enough to tempt me. I am in no humour at present to give consequence to young ladies who are slighted by other men. You had better return to your partner and enjoy her smiles, for you are wasting your time with me.”
“A lady’s imagination is very rapid; it jumps from admiration to love, from love to matrimony, in a moment.”
Your conjecture is totally wrong, I assure you. My mind was more agreeably engaged. I have been meditating on the very great pleasure which a pair of fine eyes in the face of a pretty woman can bestow.
“In vain I have struggled. It will not do. My feelings will not be repressed. You must allow me to tell you how ardently I admire and love you.”
“You are too generous to trifle with me. If your feelings are still what they were last April, tell me so at once. My affections and wishes are unchanged, but one word from you will silence me on this subject for ever.”
“My object then was to show you, by every civility in my power, that I was not so mean as to resent the past; and I hoped to obtain your forgiveness, to lessen your ill opinion, by letting you see that your reproofs had been attended to. How soon any other wishes introduced themselves I can hardly tell, but I believe in about half an hour after I had seen you.”
Lizzy and Darcy:
“And your defect is a propensity to hate everybody.”
“And yours,” he replied with a smile, “is willfully to misunderstand them.”
“Books— oh! no. I am sure we never read the same, or not with the same feelings.”
“I am sorry you think so; but if that be the case, there can at least be no want of subject. We may compare our different opinions.”
“There is a stubbornness about me that never can bear to be frightened at the will of others. My courage always rises at every attempt to intimidate me.”
“I shall not say you are mistaken, because you could not really believe me to entertain any design of alarming you; and I have had the pleasure of your acquaintance long enough to know that you find great enjoyment in occasionally professing opinions which in fact are not your own.”
“Your cousin will give you a very pretty notion of me, and teach you not to believe a word I say. I am particularly unlucky in meeting with a person so able to expose my real character, in a part of the world where I had hoped to pass myself off with some degree of credit.”
“I certainly have not the talent which some people possess of conversing easily with those I have never seen before. I cannot catch their tone of conversation, or appear interested in their concerns, as I often see done.”
“My fingers do not move over this instrument in the masterly manner which I see so many women’s do. They have not the same force or rapidity, and do not produce the same expression. But then I have always supposed it to be my own fault- because I would not take the trouble of practicing.”
3. John Thornton and Margaret Hale – North and South (Elizabeth Gaskell)
I wish I could tell you how lonely I am. How cold and harsh it is here. Everywhere there is conflict and unkindness. I think God has forsaken this place. I believe I have seen hell and it’s white, it’s snow-white.
“Miss Hale, I didn’t just come here to thank you. I came… because… I think it… very likely… I know I’ve never found myself in this position before. It’s… difficult to find the words. Miss Hale, my feelings for you… are very strong…”
“I’m well aware that in your eyes at least, I’m not a gentleman. But I think I deserve to know why I am offensive.”
“I spoke to you about my feelings because I love you; I had no thought for your reputation!”
“I don’t want to possess you! I wish to marry you because I love you!”
“One minute we talk of the colour of fruit, the next of love. How does that happen?”
Margaret Hale: I’m sorry.
John Thornton: For what? That you find my feelings for you offensive? Or that you assume because I’m in trade I’m only capable of thinking in terms of buying and selling? Or that I take pleasure in sending my employees to an early grave?
Margaret Hale: No! No, no, of course not. I’m… I’m sorry… to be so blunt. I’ve not learnt how to… how to refuse… how to respond when a… when a man talks to me as you just have.
John Thornton: Oh, there are others? This happens to you every day. Of course. You must have to disappoint so many men that offer you their heart.
Margaret Hale: Please, understand Mr. Thornton…
John Thornton: I do understand. I understand you completely.
4. Rhett Butler and Scarlett O’Hara – Gone with the Wind
Scarlett: Rhett, Rhett… Rhett, if you go, where shall I go? What shall I do?
Rhett Butler: Frankly, my dear, I don’t give a damn.
Scarlett: Sir, you are no gentleman.
Rhett Butler: And you, Miss, are no lady.
Scarlett: Cathleen, Who’s that?
Cathleen Calvert: Who?
Scarlett: That man looking at us and smiling? The nasty dark one?
Cathleen Calvert: My dear don’t you know? Thats Rhett Butler! He’s from Charleston, he has the most terrible reputation!
Scarlett: He looks as if he knows what I look like without my shimmy.
Rhett Butler: No, I don’t think I will kiss you, although you need kissing, badly. That’s what’s wrong with you. You should be kissed and often, and by someone who knows how.
Scarlett: [pleads with Rhett as he is about to leave to join the Confederate Army] Oh, Rhett! Please, don’t go! You can’t leave me! Please! I’ll never forgive you!
Rhett Butler: I’m not asking you to forgive me. I’ll never understand or forgive myself. And if a bullet gets me, so help me, I’ll laugh at myself for being an idiot. There’s one thing I do know… and that is that I love you, Scarlett. In spite of you and me and the whole silly world going to pieces around us, I love you. Because we’re alike. Bad lots, both of us. Selfish and shrewd. But able to look things in the eyes as we call them by their right names.
Scarlett: [struggles] Don’t hold me like that!
Rhett Butler: [holds her tighter] Scarlett! Look at me! I’ve loved you more than I’ve ever loved any woman and I’ve waited for you longer than I’ve ever waited for any woman.
[kisses her forhead]
Scarlett: [turns her face away] Let me alone!
Rhett Butler: [forces her to look him in the eyes] Here’s a soldier of the South who loves you, Scarlett. Wants to feel your arms around him, wants to carry the memory of your kisses into battle with him. Never mind about loving me, you’re a woman sending a soldier to his death with a beautiful memory. Scarlett! Kiss me! Kiss me… once…
[he kisses her]
5. Gilbert Blythe and Anne Shirley – Anne of Green Gables Series (Lucy Maud Montgomery)
Anne Shirley: I don’t want marble halls and sunbursts, all I want is you.
Anne Shirley: You just think that you love me.
Gilbert Blythe: Anne, I’ve loved you as long as I can remember. I need you.
Anne Shirley: I feel as though someone’s handed me the moon… and I don’t exactly know what to do with it.
Anne Shirley: I’ve made up my mind to go to my grave unwept, unhonored and unsung.
Gilbert Blythe: But not unpublished.
Gilbert Blythe: You know, every day I would pick a different memory of you and play it over and over and over again in my mind, until every hair, every freckle, every part of you was exactly as I remembered.
GREEN SNAKE (1993) May 3, 2010
ANOTHER FABULOUS TSUI HARK FILM IS GREEN SNAKE (1993)
Similar to A Chinese Ghost Story, Green Snake was based on Chinese folk tale. Green Snake is a novel written by Lillian Lee, which is a variation of the folk tale Madame White Snake, where Lillian Lee tells the story from the perspective of Xiaoqing, the Green Snake, who normally plays a minor role behind the main character Bai Suzhen, the White Snake. As the title suggests, the movie also features Xiaoqing as the main character.
Two snake spirits have been training for many centuries to take human form and experience the love, freedom and wisdom that is supposedly only available to humans. White Snake (Joey Wong) is the more experienced one and proceeds to get engaged with local scholar Hsui Xien (Wu Hsing-Kuo), with whom she plans to have a child which would complete her passage into the mortal realm. Green Snake (Maggie Cheung) is the younger and more impulsive of the two sisters and she is not yet quite sure about the benefits of the human world. The two snakes move into their magically created house and start a successful medical practice in the town.
Their enemies are a buffoonish Taoist and an overzealous Buddhist monk (Vincent Zhao) who make various attempts to banish them from the human world. The monk thinks of himself as a keeper of the natural order of the world and is very prejudiced against spiritual beings seeking to improve themselves. He brings things to a head when he abducts White’s husband from the human/spirit mixed marriage into his religious reeducation camp–styled temple.