Since the beginning of time, a park has been created where people can play card games or go horseback riding, boating, canoeing or skiing. The rules of these activities differ from place to place, but they all fall into one or more of three categories: floating, water or rock. The floating games are the oldest of these.
The first developed in the Chinese region of China, the game of the creek is still played today. A ball is thrown in a circle around a group of players and has to be thrown into a hole or other object and then another ball is thrown in to try to find it. When a player finds the ball, he takes it home and repeats the whole process until the ball is thrown back into the hole. The last player to throw the ball home wins. The object of the game is to be the first player to win with five or more balls at a time.
According to Chinese legend, when one of the four lakes on the Gobi Desert was hit by a flood, the creek running through it became a series of islands and continues to rise today. This is believed to be the origin of the game in China. In Taiwan, it is called the Hwai Ming.
The first recorded game of the creek is recorded in an ancient Chinese painting. It shows a crew from the king’s army waiting for the people to leave their island of Hao to sail to another island where they will find food and home.
Another of the oldest floating games is the Kien Sui, which means China fan. It is played on a flat river bed or a river bank on which some streamers, vines, pebbles and net are spread. The objective is to touch as many pebbles as possible by throwing the ball into the hole as fast as possible. A team is considered to be out when its players have dropped their ball or when it has reached the hole and went to rest there.
The Chinese river represents the Fude, the creek in the center of the game. A ball is thrown, being weighted in a basket, into the hole on either side of the water at either end of the Fude. One team wins when it has caught as many balls as possible, or when it catches the ball and brings it back to the hole.
Of all the floating games, the Cuckoo Bird is the oldest, according to an ancient Chinese legend. A ball is thrown into a hole in the ground, suspended on some string, and it flies across the water.