My "vacation" at China was great. However, when I came back to SoCal I literally teared up. California is so fortunate and lucky compared to China: perfect weather, safe driving, FREEDOM. During the summer a group of Shanghai kids came to our summer Chemistry class to observe. The Shanghai kids were sponsored by the PCC Earth Camp? They had to stand in front of the classroom and ask us questions in order to practice their English. One by one they stated their English name that they were given in their English classes. At first they were commom names like John, Peter, or David. But the last guy said, "Freedom". The whole class bursted into laughter. He was serious...
This summer I had to go to China to perform in the Shanghai World Expo 2010 with my ballet troupe. It was a wonderful experience because I got to practice in the Shanghai Ballet School, practically one of the most prestigious ballet institutions. That part was successful. After Shanghai, my dad and I went to Kunming. In Kunming there is a city called Shi Ping, which is more rural and bucolic. I got to volunteer in a one-room clinic serving the countryside citizens. I also got to teach children (not exactly children, because there was a 20 year old) English. It was especially difficult because these children grew up speaking Shi Ping hua, instead of Pu Tong hua. Pu Tong hua is common mandarin and sounds more proper and decent. Shi Ping hua, however, sounds staggered and has a somewhat lower tone.
While at China I realized that every man smokes. Every man on the street was either holding a cigarette or match. I remember when my dad, uncle, and I stopped at a small shop to drink some wine rice (very good!) I saw a man and asked my dad wide-eyed, "Is that man smoking from a pole?". He literally stuck his whole face in a pole and started inhaling in massive amounts of weed. During my time in China I tried to prevent myself from breathing in secondhand smoke and also tried to preach about the horrible effects of smoking. I knew that children are not educated about the effects of smoking like how the children in America are. I know this because I asked a 2o year old man who smoked if he was ever warned about cigarettes. He said he was informed a little, but when he joined in the army he gave in to peer pressure. His parents were also OK with the whole situation of buying cigarettes. I also managed to mention about the effects of smoking when I taught children English. When there was traffic on the freeway, I stuck out a sign on the window that said "SMOKING IS BAD FOR YOUR HEALTH. Yan Dui Ni Shen Ti Bu Hao (in chinese characters)". This blog since it is Google-powered is blocked in China. Would it be crazy if I made a Chinese blog in order to continue informing about smoking? I guess smoking in Third World Countries is also one of the many crisis that the society faces, kind of like global warming.
a blog that will make you smile:)