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Acerbus Dulcis

CHINA | Friday, 19 December 2008 | Views [704] | Comments [2]

I arrived safely back in Zhangzhou on the 14th and I haven't written for a few days because I've been busy writing up my stories from Shanghai (there are more to come) and organising my self for my next trip.

I leave for Hanoi, Vietnam in a few hours and I'm so excited. I'm excited not only to be starting a new leg of my journey, but also to be meeting up with one of my best friends, Lyb, and her boy friend, Graeme.

At times overs the past two and a half months, I've been quite lonely. Although it's been wonderful to visit my Dad and his wife June in Zhangzhou and to travel by my self to Guangzhou, Hong Kong and Shanghai - its left me feeling a bit starved for the company of a friend. I'm awfully grateful to my Dad and June though, for putting up with me while I've been here. 

I've been thinking about the two main reason for this trip. The first reason is much like everyone's reason for traveling - I want to experience life, meet people, learn and grow, and see the world. But for me this trip has at times felt very surreal, considering how seriously close I came to dying during my car accident a few years ago. Every day I feel incredibly lucky to still be alive and to be able to travel. At times my few remaining injuries remind me of how bloody lucky I am to be walking at all.

The second reason for my trip is to practice my writing, something I would eventually like to make a living from. Its been fantastic to finally have something interesting to write about, so I've been writing during my entire trip. My bag is filled with scraps of paper I've scrawled a quick thought on and I constantly write stories in my head. I really do hope to improve my journalistic skills during my travels and then improve even further after going to university when I return to Sydney.

Anyway, it's only a short time until I leave China and I'm feeling good about it. I'm glad to have seen both sides of China - the bigger cities (Guangzhou, Shanghai and Hong Kong) and the smaller country cities (Zhangzhou, Longyan etc). There is a huge divide between country and city China and the differences are vast. A lot of the larger cities in China are very well developed and expanding at a rapid rate, but it seems many of the smaller country cities don't have as many luxuries and are quite cut off from the rest of the world in some respects. Things such as technology, education, interaction with different races and cultures - all of these things are different in the country.

However one thing you can find constant throughout every part of China is their culture. The small and large cultural differences from western countries - some bad (like spitting) and others charming (like wearing pyjamas outside) - these unique Chinese cultural traits can be found everywhere and the Chinese people will continue to be proud of their culture, as well as their traditions and history.

I've met some amazing people, seen some incredible things, been lonely, been awestruck, been frustrated, been ecstatic - a mixed bag, but and all in all I've had a fantastic time.

Not only has my trip here taught me a lot about China and the Chinese culture and people, but its also been a fantastic start to my journey. I'm looking forward to the next chapter. :)

(NB: Acerbus Dulcis means bitter sweet in Latin.)

Relaxing in Shanghai Civilised Park, Zhujiajiao city, Shanghai Province.

Relaxing in Shanghai Civilised Park, Zhujiajiao city, Shanghai Province.

 

Comments

1

Acerbus dulcis: what a brilliant attempt to succinctly describe the unfathomable, intrinsic dichotomous nature of China, and your experience of it!

Hoping to hear from you very soon, as you'll be in Vietnam by now.

Take care of yourself my Darling.

Much love always,

  antique Rose Dec 20, 2008 6:18 AM

2

Thank god you've gone! Now I can have my computer back and watch TV without having to listen to your political ramblings and raving about all the injustices in the world. Peace and quiet at last! (sigh)

We're gonna miss you hon.

Love Baba & WangYiJuan

  Baba Dec 20, 2008 7:25 PM

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