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Finding the extraordinary amongst ordinary

CHINA | Thursday, 15 May 2014 | Views [90] | Scholarship Entry

Eyes, blackened and burnt, piercing my soul. Tail, upward and curled, ready to sting.

Paralyzed, I stand with my mouth wide open and eyes clenched shut while every atom in my body begins dancing to the song of quantum theory. I know in my heart, that in this very moment if I tried hard enough I could teleport.

I open my eyes to find myself walking on forbidden grounds of an old city. There is an eeriness about the place in the early hours of the morning, and as I stare at the imperial structure that stands proudly before me, I begin to contemplate about the past, present and future that lie within each moment of life.

I wonder what stories are embedded within the walls of the 9999 rooms this palace holds. I scan the open ground and imagine thousands of soldiers standing, each with his own likes and dislikes, created and disintegrated in a century we can only read according to what has been writ.

And then there is us, archiving every moment and leaving no question unanswered for those who are to come after us. Here we are today, stripping away mystery, wonder and awe from our very existence. And in these moments, where nothing remains untouched, we scavenge the earth to find that which would make our hearts race and our minds tingle.

Here I stand, staring into blackened eyes and a charred body lodged upon a stick. It’s tail, upward and curled, ready to sting as it moved closer. I clenched my eyes shut and bit down hard. Every atom in my body dances to the hum of fear, and I let out a squeamish noise, one not unfamiliar to the Wangfujing food street. I pushed my preconditioned notions aside and let the flavor overtake my buds and I realized a new taste, a new feeling; one similar to that of a crispy shrimp.

I open my eyes, with a proud smile on my face that goes unnoticed amongst the carefree youth of Beijing that go on snacking and talking about their day.

I look at the half eaten scorpion; I look at my extraordinary moment that that will dissolve with time amongst the thousand other stories on this very street. And I smile.

Tags: 2014 Travel Writing Scholarship - Euro Roadtrip

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