Beyond Dim Sum Essay

820 words - 4 pages

Beyond Dim Sum

 

There is truth to the platitude that it isn't the destination that is important, but the route that one takes to get there. To say my goals for studying abroad were purely academic would be skewing the truth; studying Chinese took me to China. But just as from studying Chinese language, I have gained new insights into China's cultural and historical legacy, so too, in going to China have I gleaned more than just the ability to speak a foreign language.

 

I remember arriving in Beijing. I was awestruck. Tiananmen Square on my left, the Forbidden City on my right, a giant-sized portrait of a deified Mao Zedong looking down on me from above. It seemed ...view middle of the document...

Ironically, my vehicle is Chinese; until this point, my studies have been so figurative. It is so strange to actually hear people use this language that I have been studying for so long in American classrooms as their everyday mode of communication, as I use English."

 

As I discovered, the world indeed is a large place; and there I was amidst a part of it completely and totally alien to me. With the passing of each day, however, I would make more and larger strides toward acquainting myself with my surroundings. On my first day in Beijing, it is embarrassing to admit, I wandered barely beyond the reaches of my dormitory. But in the weeks to come, I would explore the campus and its neighboring parts, and eventually I would learn to take the taxi, bus, and the subway; my willingness to explore would grow and so too would the scope of my explorations. While I would never see the metropolitan city of Beijing in its entirety, I would, as my language skills improved and my experiences accrued, reach a point where I would find stability in my surroundings.

 

Along with this new-found stability, China, this 5,000-year-old civilization, this place that I had once described...

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