China

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I still feel like I am trying to grasp reality. I am so happy to be home, to be with those i care for most, to feel that things are much simpler, and easier, breathe clean air, relieve myself of my homesickness, amongst other things I had longed for. But part of me misses the world I learned to know, the lifestyle i learned to live, and the wonderful friends that made me happy every day. Part of me misses the chaos, the randomness in every aspect, and the salty cuisine. I guess I am still trying to process everything. Being home, It feels like I never left. Yet so much has happened and my eyes have seen so much. I feel so different in some ways yet being back in the same place makes me feel as nothing has changed. 

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Planned to eat a nice dinner consisting of lentil soup, cheese, and sichuan university’s wonderful naan bread. When i arrived at the Naan bread place…. It was closed! Of course Naan bread was still on my mind. and south gate muslim stand came to mind. this is my humor for the day.

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      Sichuan had an earthquake the other day. Chengdu was not the center so we were safe- but that doesn’t mean i did not feel it. My roommate said “wow it is really windy.” i looked out the window, only to notice that it did not look windy at all, the trees weren’t even moving, in a matter of a time the ground was shaking all over, and my first thought was to run out of the room. stupidly, i started running down the stairs. In a matter of split seconds i thought to myself “I’m on the sixth floor….”. so then i ran back up. A couple seconds later it was over. 

   Today my teacher spoke about the greed of humans. He talked about how materialism has taken over China. He explained how we destroy the earth, steal all its resources and don’t respect nature. His theory about earthquakes is that they are do to the confrontations with people. He said, many years ago they didn’t have earthquakes like this.

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I feel like I’m in a dream. I vividly experience the reality I am in, but I know I’m in a dream. I will come back to my real reality soon, but as for now I can only grasp where I am. I can’t grasp the world outside of my dream. It is like a looking through a cup of water, clouded yet reflecting blurred visions of the other side .I can’t grasp what occurs outside my dream: The tragedies and unfortunate surprises of the recent world. I know about them and they touch my heart with a stinging sensation. However, I can not fully grasp it until I come out of my dream. I wish to be out of this dream as I long for my reality and stability of the real reality, yet the dream is nice as well. It gives me a new perspective and a new way to live my life. Will i say that i like this dream better than the outside? They are incomparable. Two different of realities to say which one I would rather stay in. Yet, i will say that there are too many things in the real world that draw me back, like a magnet hard to repel. I want so badly to be out of this dream, however, I need to dream in order to be refreshed and rested the next time i wake up. When I wake up, I hope to feel well-rested, as if cold water was splashed on my face-in absolute surprise. i want to feel new and take what i ventured in my dream and enjoy my real reality. Be with the people i care about most and grasp the reality again.

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What do we leave behind when we cross each frontier? Each moment seems split in two; melancholy for what was left behind and the excitement of entering a new land.
Ernesto Guevara, The Motorcyle Diaries movie (based on Che Guevaras young journeys throughout south america) 

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Whats life without a little humor? Today my International Trade class (the most terribly boring class ever) was essentially turned into a three hour semi-controversial social time. We literally watched a dating show, talked about current events, talked about how to make successful business, why women with PHDS in China don’t have husbands, the book my professor wants to write, as well as how we are going to now have discussion classes on topics. The education system in China cracks me up as it is so drastic from the structure of American Universities and Colleges. Though informal and not very educational, its nice to have a laugh once and a while, especially in a subject i don’t care much about and has no real importance to my major/life goals. 

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Today we watched a documentary about AIDS in China in my culture class. Wow what a powerful movie. It really covered a lot I never thought about. There was this child Gao Jun who was ignored by his whole community for having aids. he was only around 3-4 years old. He looked so sad and rugged for his age. His parents both died of AIDs and he was left on his own. The uncle talked about how he worried for the child because of isolation. It really made me upset to see such a small child facing such terrible, unfortunate difficulties. What really got me was the ignorance the villagers had. They would not go near his house, or let their children play with him. 

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Its funny how the simplest things can brighten your day. Riding to class today, my bike was bouncing up and down, i knew there was something wrong. lately it has seemed so difficult to ride, and this time i knew there was something wrong for sure. So i stopped at the bike shop (literally bikes set outside on campus and a guy working on them) and the guy i bought it from fixed it for me in 10 minutes! it was a flat tire! he only charged me 2 kuai.. (about 33 cents) 

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How great today was! I finally feel on top of things. This is midterm week, going to be hard but I’m making progress. will say that running any other time than 6:20 Am can be great. But thats because the air pollution has been very low recently (thumbs up). It was so nice to run along the river, feel the sun shining on my face (ironic because i usually don’t like running when its sunny out). I am excited to see what this week brings. I almost like being busier. It reminds me of school at home. Maybe i haven’t been busy enough here. I felt as though I was in summer school. Lately I feel like I’m in college again. 

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Chongqing. What a great experience to run in a race, unexpected and awesome. Had I registered before for the half marathon, I could see myself psyching myself out and getting nervous, making sure I sleep right, all the little things. But sometimes I think too much. Maybe it has to do with the fact that I have been running for so many years (around 13-14 years) that I want to do everything perfect to get somewhere since my improvement has not happened much in the last couple years. But actually, last minute-night before decision to enter the half marathon was definitely a risky, but very-satisfying decision. It made me feel alive, strong, and fast something I haven’t felt in a while, especially with running.

Chongqing. What a great experience to run in a race, unexpected and awesome. Had I registered before for the half marathon, I could see myself psyching myself out and getting nervous, making sure I sleep right, all the little things. But sometimes I think too much. Maybe it has to do with the fact that I have been running for so many years (around 13-14 years) that I want to do everything perfect to get somewhere since my improvement has not happened much in the last couple years. But actually, last minute-night before decision to enter the half marathon was definitely a risky, but very-satisfying decision. It made me feel alive, strong, and fast something I haven’t felt in a while, especially with running.