环球评报网讯 | 2017年11月30日，新布伦瑞克省孔子学院庆祝成立十周年，曲阜师范大学副校长扈鲁先生率团参加并作了“葫芦文化与儒家文化”精彩的主题演讲。活动中，扈鲁先生把自己创作的三十幅富有美好寓意的葫芦画作赠予孔子学院。
On November 30th, 2017, Hu Lu, Vice President of Qufu Normal University, headed a delegation to attend the 10th anniversary celebration of the Confucius Institute in New Brunswick where he gave a keynote speech entitled “Gourd Culture and Confucian Culture”, and donated 30 meaningful freehand gourd paintings created by himself to the Institute.
Mr. John McLaughlin引荐扈鲁结识艾茉莉
会议间歇，经新布伦瑞克省教育厅副厅长Mr. John McLaughlin引荐，扈鲁先生结识了教育厅职员艾茉莉女士。艾茉莉的先生John自幼喜欢葫芦，对在葫芦上作画也颇有研究。艾茉莉还现场打开手机，详细介绍了她先生的葫芦画。
During the break, Hu Lu was introduced to Ms. Kimberly in the Department of Education by the Deputy Director of the Department of Education of New Brunswick. Kimberly’s husband John has been fond of gourds since childhood, and he is quite good at painting on gourds. She introduced her husband’s gourd paintings in detail with the help of the pictures stored in her mobile phone.
In July, I led a delegation of principals from New Brunswick to visit Qufu Normal University. We also visited the Gourd Culture Museum where we were surprised at the gourds of different sizes and forms and deeply attracted by the gourd culture and stories. Hu Lu came to me and asked whether I could help him to buy John’s works if possible.
It was during the summer vacation when I came back to Canada, so I could not find John who is a French teacher. On August 1, I had a meeting with officials of the Ministry of Education to discuss the syllabus. When I entered the meeting room, I was overjoyed to know that Ms. Kimberly turned out to be John’s wife. I greeted her and we had a chat. I told her that I met Hu Lu in July and showed her the video about our visit to the Gourd Culture Museum. Kimberly turned on her computer and shared with me a picture of her friend playing the gourd lute made by John. I took the opportunity to tell her that Hu Lu wished to buy John’s works. Ms. Kimberly smiled, “No, it is not for sale, but we can give it to Mr. Hu Lu.”
In this early August, Kimberly came to my home with John and their son the night before I went to China. She carefully opened a box containing two exquisite gourds: one is colored made by John and the other is green made by John’s father who was a professor at UNB University and fond of planting gourds and painting on them in his spare time. At that time, John said humorously, “I used to regard my father as the king of gourd, but now I think Hu Lu from China is the real king of gourd.”
When John’s mother heard that John’s gourd would be taken to China, she drove from another city to her son’s home and brought the work of John’s father. She said, “Please take it to China too. Your father has been growing gourds and painting gourds all his life. Although he has passed away, he must be glad that his work will be sent to China.” Tears welled up in my eyes because it exhibited the love and respect of the Canadian father and his son for the Chinese gourd collector. It is not only a vivid portrayal of cultural exchange between the east and the west but also a successful case of exchange between Canadians and people from Confucius’ hometown. They also wrote a card containing a line of Kurt Vonnegut who is a famous American writer: The little things in life are big things.
The next day when I went to China, I carried the box in my handbag. On my way I opened it from time to time to see whether the gourds were in good condition. When I arrived in Qufu, China, I attended the First Global Confucius Institute Shandong Cultural Tourism Summit where I told the guests from five countries the story of the two gourds. I took pride in what I had done.
When I returned to Canada, I handed on Hu Lu’s gourd paintings to Ms. Kimberly. She was so excited that she praised them repeatedly, saying that her husband and mother-in-law would like them. My heart was filled with joy as I watched her walk away.
If a gourd could speak, it would be able to tell many stories about friendship, for example, the story of its going to China with the wishes and expectations of the Canadian father and son, of its coming to Canada with the true feelings and goodwill that all the people in the world will live like a family.
A gourd cannot speak so I decided to write down this story which would act as a testimony to the everlasting friendship between China and Canada. I think that the Confucius Institute has built a bridge of friendship in the world and how honored I am to have the opportunity to witness the friendship and pass it on.