There are four main stages of culture shock when moving to a foreign country:
1. Honeymoon (Excitement) 2. Rejection 3. Withdrawal 4. Adjustment & Adaptation
I feel as if I’ve reached #3, but it’s not as negative as it sounds.
General distrust for everything (with much reason) in this city has led me to become a much more withdrawn person—the complete opposite of the way everyone knows me. Lately, I find myself running and hiding in the dark as much as possible. At work, I eat lunch in an empty hallway. At home, I immediately go into my room, lock my door & turn out the lights for the rest of the evening. At social events, I prefer to silently play Sudoku on my phone until it is time to leave.
This isn’t depression.
Growth consists of developing habits, and setting goals…
The first weekday of every calendar week is spent swathed in a cheap towel from the local supermarket as the entire day is dedicated to deep-conditioning, de-tangling, three-strand twisting, and hating/loving my hair while listening to John Legend’s “Love in the Future” album. The evening is spent staring out of my bedroom window & researching lectures to attend, places to visit and books to read. Consecrating a special time for the purpose of learning to take care of both my mind and body will teach lessons of discipline, timing and prioritization. Lessons that will guide me through my career, social interactions, and (maybe) a future romantic relationship.
In my corner of Beijing, Mondays are for falling in love.
Mid-Autumn Festival: September 8th, 2014.
Also known as “Moon Festival”, Mid-Autumn Fest is a time to celebrate traditional Chinese legends such as Chang’er, who lives on the moon. As part of the celebration, you’ll receive gifts of fancy moon cakes from family, friends, co-workers (Photo: my centre director wheeling a stack of moon cakes into our office). This is also a romantic time for couples. If you’re long-distance, both lovers are supposed watch the moon at the same time.
Here’s the story of Chang’er & Hou Yi that my students referred me to:
Long long ago, there were 10 suns in the sky. They burnt all the plants on the earth. People were dying.
One day, a hero whose name was Hou Yi used his bow and arrows to shoot down nine of them. All the people on the earth were saved.
One day, the queen of heaven gave Hou Yi a bottle elixir that could make Hou Yi become an immortal, but the elixir was only efficacious for one person. Hou Yi did want to become an immortal, but he wanted to stay with his beautiful wife Chang’er more, so he didn’t drink the elixir and asked his wife Chang’er to keep it for him.
Hou Yi was becoming more and more famous after he shot down the nine suns and more and more men wanted Hou Yi to be their master. Most of them were accepted by Hou Yi.
Not every student of Hou Yi had good morality. Feng Meng, one of his students, wanted to seize his elixir. One day, Hou Yi went hunting with his students, but Feng Meng pretended to be ill and stay at home. When making sure Hou Yi had gone he went to Hou Yi’s house and tried to force Chang’er to give him the elixir. Chang’er knew she couldn’t defeat Feng Meng so she drank the elixir immediately. The elixir made her become an immortal and fly higher and higher. Finally, she stopped on the moon.
From then on, people often pray to Chang’er for fortune and safety. During the Mid-Autumn Festival they offer lots of foods to Chang’er.
BBC article w/photos: http://www.bbc.com/news/in-pictures-29106028
“Today Art Museum” visit.
Photo Quote: “Mom, when can I come out? Mom, you are a gentle mother? Mom, who do you look like? Mom, do you love a boy or a girl?”
My favorite part of the exhibit.
Video of full work below:<p><a href=”http://vimeo.com/105549916″>TITLE VID</a> from <a href=”http://vimeo.com/user26691437″>Jall</a> on <a href=”https://vimeo.com”>Vimeo</a>.</p>
1. Collage of some of the video exhibits in Building #3.
2. There were three buildings that make up the Today Art Museum, so here are miscellaneous pieces.
3. Snapshots of a video that featured a progression of two women going from Clothed –> Naked –> Clothed
4. The wooden structures had a series of peepholes that each gave sight to a unique picture or small video. 5. Building #2: Section of Experimental Art. All the following photos were taken in this building.
Seoul, S. Korea soon!