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Published: October 8th 2012
First of all, it's Thanksgiving weekend in Canada so I want to properly thank all of my family and friends for their love, support, patience and understanding. I wouldn't be where I am today without any of it so thank you.
I should also express my thanks to Tyler. He is my rock. There aren't words to describe what an amazing person he is; I'm so lucky to have found him and to be able to go on this journey with him. I couldn't have dreamed up a better man if I tried so thank you Tyler for my morning hugs, my bed time kisses and all of the other things you do in a day.
China has surprised me every day.
I've got to admit, I've written this blog 4 or 5 different ways and it hasn't come out how I wanted yet so here I am again, CTRL + ALT + DEL, starting from scratch again.
I could take time sharing with you all of the things that impress and/or disgust me about China, but I really don't think it's my place to share my judgements knowing that what I say might effect your perception of this country. No matter what I tell you about China, it won't mean as much to you as it has to me. When I get home and I have been able to fully digest this adventure, I'll do my best to accurately convey what China has meant to me.
All you need to know for now is that China is beautiful from the inside out.
This month has been overwhelming. I can't begin to describe what I've learned or what I've seen.
When I look back on the month, there is one conversation that stands out for me that I want to share with you.
At the train station in Xi'an we were waiting to board our train that would take us to Chengdu. It was here that we met Oran, a solo traveller who just finished backpacking through Mongolia. He is from Israel and had recently completed his tenure working for the army. His passport photo was a clean cut straight-faced man but the guy who we were talking to hadn't cut his hair for months, hadn't shaved in probably the same amount of time and was all smiles heading to meet his sister and her boyfriend to celebrate a Jewish holiday. As the three of us stood in line at the train station we exchanged stories of where we had been, where we want to go etc.
Somewhere during this conversation Oran began to tell us about how a bag of his was stolen at a restaurant and he had to buy a new cell phone, laptop and some other personal items. I remarked “Oh my God, that's horrible” and his response was this: “Well it wasn't horrible, no one died or anything” and then laughed like I was crazy.
It wasn't horrible... no one died.
We didn't end up seeing Oran after boarding the train and he will never realize what that simple sentence meant to me.
Do you realize how many decisions you make in a day? How many petty things you fret over?
If you are alive, if you are capable of making decisions, decide to smile. Decide to not sweat the small stuff. Decide to live your life. If no one died, it's probably not horrible. When I said that to Oran I didn't even think twice; horrible is just another word in my vocabulary that I toss around as if it doesn't have a deeper meaning.
There are two things I learned that day; ONE: I should be more aware of the things I say, TWO: when something seems shitty, is it really that bad?
Today I'm thankful that I get a tomorrow, I'm thankful that I can run into people every day who change my life for the better.
It's hard for me to share these personal thoughts. I don't know if you understand where I'm coming from or if you think I'm slightly bonkers; I just thought that if something so little can mean so much to me, maybe it will mean that much to someone else. If one person get's it, then I'm glad I shared.
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