Chapter 161 - Chenghuang Temple
Ouyang Shuo returned to the lord's manor.
When he passed the clerk's office and saw Bai Nanpu who was arranging some documents, he suddenly remembered something and said, "Nanpu, about the administrative meeting this month, let's set it on the 25th. Go inform each division to prepare. Since we just upgraded, ask all of them to prepare a specific report on the next stage of their work."
"Yes, sire!" Bai Nanpu jotted it down.
"Oh ya, and also please ask Director Tian to come to my office."
"Okay." Bai Nanpu nodded, turning around and exiting the office.
Ouyang Shuo walked into the guest room and picked up the teaware, personally brewing a pot of white tea.
When Tian Wenjing entered and saw Ouyang Shuo brewing the tea, he was astonished and rushed up to help. "This kind of tough job, how can I let sire do it?"
Ouyang Shuo waved him off and invited him to sit across him, smiling. "The way of the tea is brewed and profound. By occasionally doing it, one can wipe away one's annoyance." As he said it, he pushed the cup of tea in front of Tian Wenjing.
Tian Wenjing hurried and picked up the teacup, taking a few sips before putting it down.
After the greeting, Ouyang Shuo got straight to the point. "If I shift you away from the Material Reserves Department, I'm saying if, then whom out of the 3 secretaries and the deputy director do you think could become the director?"
Tian Wenjing froze, he originally thought that Ouyang Shuo had called him to discuss work and didn't expect him to drop such a bombshell, shifting him away from the Material Reserves Department for what cause?
For a moment, Tian Wenjing hesitated and didn't know how to reply.
Ouyang Shuo shook his head and smiled. "You don't need to worry about anything, just give me your objective comments."
Since Ouyang Shuo had put it like that, he had no choice but to answer. Tian Wenjing calmed himself down and went into deep thought, summarizing the 4 people one by one in his head.
The Deputy Director Yuan Shaoping was promoted because of the gold mine. His professionalism was undoubted but his administrative skills were hindered by his birth, and adding with Langshan mining field being so far from the main camp, Yuan Shaoping didn't have the chance to attend the Lianzhou College. Hence, he was lacking much. Furthermore, the current Langshan mining field needed this manager and he wouldn't be able to leave at the moment.
The Resource Division Secretary Du Xiaolan was the disciple of Finance Department director Cui Yingyu. Unfortunately, as she had spent too short a time by Yingyu's side, she didn't learn everything needed. Managing the Resource Division already pushed her to her limit and wanting to take a step up was even more difficult. Not anyone could become the second Cui Yingyu.
The secretary of the Transport Division Zheng Shanpao was similarly a country bumpkin. The jobs of the Transport Division was fairly simpler. After building the Jifeng valley horse stables, most of his efforts have been placed there. He wouldn't be able to remove himself all of the sudden, and also his ability was lacking, making it hard for him to take up such an appointment.
The one Tian Wenjing admired the most was the Saltpan Division Secretary Zhang Shen Zhui.
This young man had excelled during the year-end exams and have been intelligently utilized by Ouyang Shuo. After taking over the division, he used a short time to get in on track. The Northern Saltpans had undergone many expansions but no major mistakes and errors had occurred. This secretary could take much of the credit for it.
What was rare was that Shen Zhui was flexible and had a strong desire to learn. During his free time, he would improve himself at the Lianzhou college or follow beside Tian Wenjing to learn about administrative matters.
The only thing to worry about was that he was too young and lacked experience.
As compared to Fan Zhongyan, Tian Wenjing was more direct and after consideration, he said without hesitation, "Since sire asked then I'll say boldly. If I were to recommend one person to take over as the director then I feel that out of the four, Shen Zhui is the most suitable.”
Ouyang Shuo nodded, as he too also felt that Shen Zhui was suitable for the job.
After Tian Wenjing finished, he was still rattled and uneasy, and this naturally couldn't escape Ouyang Shuo's eyes. "Sir, do you have any concerns?"
"Yes, sire!" Tian Wenjing was really direct.
Ouyang Shuo picked up the teacup and took a mouthful before saying, "To speak the truth, putting you in the Material Reserves Department is wasting your ability. Only that last time we didn't have anyone to chair the department, so we used the easy way out. Now that the department has gone on the right track and had someone like Shen Zhui to take over, it's the best time for you to move on."
Tian Wenjing’s emotions quickly picked up and he asked, "Sire is saying?"
"Don't worry, during this month's administrative meeting I'll tell all of you." Ouyang Shuo didn't want to reveal it too early.
Sending away Tian Wenjing, it was already near noon. All the workers and officials that had been busy for the entire morning left the manor and went back home for their meals.
Ouyang Shuo stood up and went to the backyard. Although Yingyu and Qing'er had moved to the adjacent buildings, they still ate their meals in the main courtyard. In Qing'er's words, she couldn't let big brother be too lonely.
In truth, in the entire back courtyard, only the main courtyard didn't have a kitchen. The chef was Wang Shen, whom Gu Sanniang had personally chosen before she left, an intermediate chef.
The dining table was filled with many dishes. There were chicken, duck, fish, meat, vegetables, and fruits. Nothing was lacking.
Ever since the jewelry shop opened, its business was booming. Many especially bought copper and silver jewelry. The migrants had nothing, and even if they had money or valuables, they were all stolen by raiders. Now that their lives were stable, naturally they started to buy jewelry.
Only with the profits of the jewelry shop was it enough to maintain the daily expenses of the lord's manor.
The economy of the territory after 3 months of constant stimulation had shown signs of prosperity. Based on Yingyu's reaction, the 5th month’s financial output had finally crossed 2000 gold.
Qing'er, that brat, was now a rich girl as the business of the garment workshop was booming.
As Shanhai Town upgraded to Shanhai County, the rate of migrants entering had increased again. Qing'er had already discussed with Wuni to increase the scale of the garment workshop.
The few of them were talking at the table.
"Big brother, guess what? In the morning when I spread the news that the lord's manor wanted to hire a maidservant for you, instantly there were a bunch of young girls that rushed forward. Of those that came, many were from rich families. Seems like big brother's charm is too much." Yingyu joked.
Ouyang Shuo shook his head. "Yingyu you must choose wisely. We are choosing a maidservant, not a wife, don't waste their futures."
"Big brother is really heartless. I really don't know what kind of girl is befitting of big brother."
Ouyang Shuo stared at her. "Eat your food, now you dare to even tease your big brother."
"Big brother, you're so overbearing." Qing'er spoke up for Yingyu.
Ouyang Shuo looked at Qing'er with surprise, turning around to look Yingyu. "Our little brat, why are you so quiet today, it's not your style."
Yingyu laughed. "Qing'er is worrying about the garment workshop. The garment workshop wants to expand its scale but the business district doesn't have any extra space, as it was mostly taken by the other big workshops."
No wonder she was so quiet, this girl had been thinking too much about money. He looked at her. "Silly brat, don't worry, why didn't you tell brother, I would have solved it for you."
"Big brother is so busy, I couldn’t bear to create more problems for you." Qing'er was considerate and thoughtful.
Ouyang Shuo shook his head. Recently he had not been thinking about this little sister.
"Okay, don't worry. The planning of the territory is about to appear. The second city wall will also start production. After it's built, there will be a lot of space for you to expand your workshop."
"Really?" Qing'er's eyes instantly brightened.
"When did brother ever lie to you?"
"Yay, thank you big brother."
"Ok, eat your food."
"En." Her worries were gone and she became a lot more joyous.
In the afternoon, Ouyang Shuo took the time to visit the Chenghuang temple.
The earliest "Chenghuang" wasn't a god but it referred to the moat outside the city. The earliest meaning of "Chenghuang" was derived from Shuiyong.
The earliest god they prayed to was the "Shuiyong God", then it slowly became the protector god of the suburbs, becoming "Chenghuang god". Chenghuang was one of the lords of the underworld and his scope was something like the magistrate. His job was to remove evil and to protect the city.
Based on historical texts, in 239 BC there was already a Chenghuang temple. During the Tang Dynasty, they prayed to him during the county festivals and only during the Song Dynasty did the custom really become common. Ever county with a magistrate would also have a Chenghuang temple.
The feudal government had listed praying to Chenghuang into the sacrificial ceremonies, mostly praying for rain, sun, and no fires. The people said that "The god that was closest to the commoners was Chenghuang."
Ever since the Ming dynasty, any county magistrate or official would pray to Chenghuang, and when it was the first day of the job, they would visit the Chenghuang temple in the morning.
Shanhai Town's Chenghuang temple was naturally built in the in the culture and education district, together with the Mazu temple and the Yellow Emperor temple, turning into a group of temples.
After the Chenghuang temple was built, the Culture and Education Division had already arranged man to maintain the Chenghuang temple.