A Horse is Not a Home

Travelling so much in such a short amount of time really made me reflect on where my home is. And after much reflection, I came to face the cold reality, which is that I do not have a home.

In my 18 yrs of living, I have never lived in one place for more than 6 years. My 6 yrs or so at Walnut was the longest duration of time I have ever spent in one place. Since birth I had been travelling from place to place, wandering and flying, I recall laying on the soft cushion of an airplane and feeling like home. By the age of 7, I had more than 200,000 miles of flying under my belt, if only the benefits for frequent fliers extended to those under 16, I would have been a Gold Member fosho.

Before turning 10, I had lived in Beijing for 4 years, Foshan for 2 years, Xinjiang for 2 years, and countless temporary stays in hotels of various major cities for weeks when it was short and months when it was long. I didn’t know what home was, books brought me ephemeral escape from the unattached reality, but I learned not to trust people too much or to get too attached to things for I would have to leave it in a short while.  At age 11, I moved overseas, first in Oregon, then Washington state, eventually to Cali and with some degree of chance, landed in Walnut.

Walnut became what I believe to be my first home, it was where I grew (physically and socially), where I made mistakes, and where I met some of best people. But even the best things have to left behind to linger in what we call the “past”. Looking forward, I will probably continue to live this modern nomadic lifestyle, living in various places, learning the different cultural social environments, and most of all meeting new people.

However, I will change my approach from now on, I will be more proactive in establishing friendships and relationships with these new people I will soon meet in the near future, and hopefully when I am old and weary I will have friends in every corner of the world. With some thought, I must say that I do not have “a” home”, but instead many “homes”. Many places where I have history, friendships, and memories. Many places where I am loved, cared for, and needed. It might be quite troublesome when deciding where to bury myself when I die, but holy shit, I don’t have to worry about that for a while.

Many Chinese are extremely hardworking………..in a very Lazy way

Since the day I arrived in China, observing my surroundings and understanding its intricacies have become habits (mainly cuz I am bored). From my observations, I noticed a similarity between what I saw and the common Asian (in my case, Chinese) stereotype that “Asians are super duper hardworking (in every endeavor they attempt)”.

With that said, not much has been said of the value of this “hardworking” industrious behavior, because most immediately assume a positive connotation. But the more I look around, I began to see much more of what I call “lazy hard-work”.

From a societal standpoint, people work very hard at what they do, but few are creative with what they do. Few attempt to venture into the unknown, to “work hard” to find innovative options and ideas. Most are content with the same level of production, the same way of life. This complacency mixed with some insecurity leads to the inability acknowledge the existence of alternatives, in my normal careless tone, I call this phenomenal not “narrow-minded” but  “simple-minded”.

From a commercial standpoint, most are content with “working hard” to COPY others, to counterfeit the popular brands, to reproduce the same script, instead of rewriting their own destiny. Companies work “very hard” to produce the same products already on the market, with the only goal of lower prices with unfair labor pays. This is a very lazy way of production, emulation implies not only lack of creativity but also lack of “motor” or motivation to create originality.

From an educational standpoint, students spend every waking hour (literally) working their butts off, but only to conform to rotary memorization of stiff concepts. They “work hard” at memorizing materials, but are lazy in looking for alternative (much healthier) study tactics and methods, ones that do not entail all-nighters for 2 yrs studying for that one College Placement test.

There are many reasonable and, in the short run, unchangeable causes for these above instances. But for now, I am only making observations and serving it up with my own spices of bias. Grant me some time, for it has only been 10 days, and I will understand the causes.

ABridged Version: “To work hard is easy and lazy, to work hard and smart is hard and difficult”