Hu Lu Treasures Gourds and Gourds Bless Hu Lu
The preparation of the Gourd Museum was started in 2010. At the beginning, the gourds were stored in the study, and later with the increase of the collection, the gourds were stored in the bedroom, living room, sofa, balcony, and corridor, and consequently the living space of Hu Lu was completely filled. However, there are more and more gourds coming. Eyes open, there are gourds; eyes closed, there are gourds. Gourds are everywhere. What should I do? The idea of building a Gourd Museum occurred to Hu Lu.
It has been forty years since the reform and opening-up, and the same long time since Hu has been attached to the gourd. How many gourds have you collected? I asked Hu Lu. “thousands of gourds of nearly one hundred species, more than 100 volumes (pieces) of gourd culture books and audio-visual materials, and gourd artworks from more than 70 countries and regions," Hu said.
Seven or eight years ago, I was fortunate to visit the Gourd Museum. It was really an eye-opener for me. The gourds fully captured my attention. The biggest was taller than me, the smallest one as big as a thumb. Staying with so many gourds of various shapes and sizes, you would feel as if you could have a good communication with them. Large and small gourds, squatting, lying or leaning, hanging from the dome, hanging on the whitewashed wall, or wrapped around the bamboo...my eyes can not take them all in. All at once, it reminded me of my visit to the famous writer Jia Pingwa's study room in Xi'an. On the two sides of the stairs leading to the attic arranged large and small lion statues called "Kangtou Lion"(lion statues put on the bed as children's patron saint) originally collected from the northern Shaanxi and Guanzhong countryside. Jia Pingwa said, "There are more than a thousand lions in the family. This is no longer a group. It can be called an army. They are scattered soldiers in the countryside of northern Shaanxi and Guanzhong. I have collected them and organized them. Wood or stone, clay or iron, once formed into a device, they all have souls." Among these devices with spirits, Mr. Jia let his thoughts fly and enters a world with alternate reality and illusory. And as for Hu Lu, he also compiles the scattered gourd soldiers around the world, and then there is a gourd organization which also has their own soul. I understood: Hu Lu treasures gourds and gourds in turn bless Hu Lu.
I suddenly realized that the gourd can also talk to us. Maybe it talks too much though as if it said nothing.