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Incredible Chinese Love Story

by Brett M. Christensen

Message tells the story of a 70 year old Chinese man who lived with his wife in a mountain cave for fifty years and hand-carved more than 6000 stairs up the mountainside for her.


Fwd: An incredible love story

An incredible love story has come out of China recently and managed to touch the world. It is a story of a man and an older woman who ran off to live and love each other in peace for over half a century.

The 70-year-old Chinese man who hand-carved over 6,000 stairs up a mountain for his 80-year-old wife has passed away in the cave which has been the couple’s home for the last 50 years. Over 50 years ago, Liu Guojiang a 19 year-old boy, fell in love with a 29 year-old widowed mother named Xu Chaoqin..
In a twist worthy of Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet, friends and relatives criticized the relationship because of the age difference and the fact that Xu already had children.
At that time, it was unacceptable and immoral for a young man to love an older woman.. To avoid the market gossip and the scorn of their communities, the couple decided to elope and lived in a cave in Jiangjin County in Southern ChongQing Municipality.
In the beginning, life was harsh as hey had nothing, no electricity or even food. They had to eat grass and roots they found in the mountain, and Liu made a kerosene lamp that they used to light up their lives.

Xu felt that she had tied Liu down and repeatedly asked him, ‘Are you regretful? Liu always replied, ‘As long as we are industrious, life will improve.’

In the second year of living in the mountain, Liu began and continued for over 50 years, to hand-carve the steps so that his wife could get down the mountain easily.

Half a century later in 2001, a group of adventurers were exploring the forest and were surprised to find the elderly couple and the over 6,000 hand-carved steps. Liu MingSheng, one of their seven children said, ‘My parents loved each other so much, they have lived in seclusion for over 50 years and never been apart a single day. He hand carved more than 6,000 steps over the years for my mother’s convenience, although she doesn’t go down the mountain that much.’

‘You promised me you’ll take care of me, you’ll always be with me until the day I died, now you left before me, how am I going to live without you?’

Xu spent days softly repeating this sentence and touching her husband’s black coffin with tears rolling down her cheeks.

In 2006, their story became one of the top 10 love stories from China , collected by the Chinese Women Weekly. The local government has decided to preserve the love ladder and the place they lived as a museum, so this love story can live forever.

The couple had lived in peace for over 50 years until last week. Liu, now 72 years, returned from his daily farm work and collapsed. Xu sat and prayed with her husband as he passed away in her arms. So in love with Xu, was Liu, that no one was able to release the grip he had on his wife’s hand even after he had passed away.

Detailed Analysis:
This message relates the story of a Chinese couple who lived happily in a cave for fifty years after they ran off together due to criticism from their family and community. According to the story, the man carved over 6000 steps up the mountainside to make access to the cave easier for his wife. Finally, says the tale, the man died in his wife’s arms at the age of 70 after a lifetime of devotion.

The story is certainly a touching and uplifting one. However, although it may well all be true, I have so far been unable to conclusively verify the story. The story, complete with photographs, was reported in various Asian news outlets during 2006. Since then, it has been posted to a large number of online forums and blogs and also circulates via email.

According to various online articles, the story was chosen among China’s top ten love stories in a competition organized by the Chinese Women Weekly. Most of the available reports are basically the same as the emailed version included above and contain the same set of photographs. Further information about the couple is apparently very scarce as are other photographs of the steps, cave and couple. However, I will update this article with more information if and when it becomes available.

Although the story itself is quite possibly true, a note of pure nonsense creeps into the text at the end of the message. The email claims that if the recipient sends the message to 15 other people and then presses the F6 key, the name of the person he or she loves will appear. However, this is completely untrue. No lover’s name will be revealed even if you forward the message to 500 people. This little trick is often used in forwarded emails as a means of ensuring that a particular message will be passed on to others. Any claim that “something”, such as the sudden appearance of a photograph or video, will happen if an email is forwarded to others is sure to be utter nonsense.

Last updated: 30th July 2008
First published: 30th July 2008
By Brett M. Christensen
About Hoax-Slayer

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