Today, the air in Shanghai is worse than the air in Beijing.
It’s eight months in China now. I’m currently listening to a podcast about The Anthill, a blog collecting writing from people like me who live in China. It’s on Sinica Podcast, and they are comparing China to Paris in the 1920s.
This is a place in time and space, according to the podcast, where people are likely to have stories to tell and places to tell them. This blog has always been that for me. The contributors believe that the rising China coupled with the extreme multiculturalism of the foreigners living here could produce the next Hemingway (currently a semi-alcoholic English Teacher writing the next Moveable Feast in her spare time).
They may well be right.
I want to be published again, and soon. I carry no less than three journals on me at all times now, and need to be more observant still. I produce a huge amount of writing, and I need to be better about putting it out there for others to see.
I know that China appeals to so many people around the world, and that in twenty years my accounts will be important to remember when a huge change happened here. I do sense that change coming, but I’m not too sure which way the change will go.
I have been thinking about how places change me, as I approach seven years since I have lived in the USA full-time (January 13, 2009!). The following is from my journal on the 946 the other day.
Italy –> Traveller
Chile –> teacher
Korea –> Partner
UK –> wife
China –> ??????????? Expat? (god forbid) Neo-Luddite? (That might be it).
Is there enough change here?
It’s funny in the context of that giant, massive change in China and in the world as we shift from unipolar geopolitics to something less pointed in the 21st century. Still, I wonder if my time in China is actually changing me as much as the other places I’ve lived.
I prefer their term on the podcast to ‘expat.’
Migrant. I am now a migrant.