Learning to Walk in Handan
During the Warring States Period, Handan, the capital of the State of Zhao, was famous for its people"s walking style. The Handanners walked with vigorous strides, which appeared very elegant and beautiful. People in other places admired them very much, they thought the Handanners" way of walking was the best under the heaven. Several young lads from the State of Yan even wanted to copy the elegant walking style of the Handanners, so they traveled a long way to Handan to learn how to walk.
While in Handan, these young lads watched the local people carefully; eager to find out how they walked. But not matter how hard they tried, they just couldn"t walk the way the Handanners did. To make things worse, when they decide to give up and go home, they realized that they had forgotten their own way of walking. They had to crawl all the way back.
The idiom "Learning to Walk in Handan" came from this legend, it is used to describe someone who imitates others blindly only to lose his or her own individuality.