*ctales*

Chinese Myths, Legends, and Tales: Pan Gu

The sky and the earth was said to be one, in the shape of a sphere, filled with darkness. In the sphere, there was a man in slumber that dreamed of what the world would look outside.
One day, he woke up, and saw nothing but darkness; the opposite of what he saw in his dreams. In a state of panic, he tried to break open the sphere, but the sphere wouldn’t budge. Then, he felt an ax, and with it, he made a crack in the sphere. A ray of light shined through the crack, and Pan Gu used his hands to rip the sphere in half. However, the sphere tried to repair itself. Pan Gu then stood up, separating the top half and the bottom half, which then became the sky and the earth.
Pan Gu continued holding the halves apart for ages, until they finally stopped pushing towards each other. Only then did Pan Gu lies down on the ground to rest, and because of the hard work, he slept for year after year, and in the end, his body connected with the earth. His breaths became clouds and wind, his snores became thunder, his eyes became the sun and the moon, his sweat became stars in the sky, his body became the ground that we walk on, his limbs became mountains, his blood became bodies of water, his hair became forests, and his teeth and bones became all kinds of jewels and metals. The world became beautiful, just as he saw in his dream.

Chinese Myths, Legends, Tales, and Real Stories: Staircase to the Sky

In Chongqing, Jiangjin Zhongsan village during 1950s, 20-year-old Liu Guojiang fell for the widow, Xu Chaoqing, who was 18 years older than him. Because Xu was a widow, and was 18 years older than Liu, negative rumors spread about their relationship. In 1956, the couple, with Xu’s four children, moved into the woods to be separated from society.
In order for Xu to go to the village and home, Liu spent half a century to build a staircase just for his wife. The staircase has more than six thousand steps, with an elevation of about 1,500 meters.
Xu did not move in with her son until December 18th of 2007, when Liu died. On October 30th of 2012, Xu passed away as well. Later, the couple’s love story was adapted into a song, movie, drama, and a documentary, and their staircase became a national attraction for couples.