“Life, the Universe, and Everything. There is an answer. But, I’ll have to think about it” – The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy
I’ve been writing my old blog for about year now, somehow I started to feel that the name and feeling of it was too much tied to Nottingham and my time being in there. This is why, I decided to create a new blog. I thought about it a quite long time, but somehow name and quote from The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy just came to me. It explains my feelings and life right now pretty well, so I wanted to give it a shot. I have no clue, is anything else changing than layout but this just feels more comfortable (same time scary, just like my life…that is the combo).
I have not introduced Shenzhen well enough yet, or at least I feel like it. I’ve been concentrating on work and uni lately, and everything else have been on ‘pause’, and I start to feel that. If I don’t have time for my natural ‘creative me time’ I get anxious. I decided that I will take the time to create and make changes to the outlook of the blog. But now when everything is all settled with that, I could actually give some insight to the city I call ‘home’ right now (will see how long, I will call it a ‘home’… but that is an another story).
I’ve unnoticed took some stereotypes of mainlanders. Moment when you’re at the border of HK and China and you find yourself standing in a place which says ‘No waiting’ and next to you is a security guy, and you just chill out and listen to music, just like every other person who is waiting to get their friend or family through the border (we have to minus the fact that I did not have a trolley with me, but let’s forgive that). Or the moment when you squeeze from places you would never think that you could squeeze before…or when you thought in your previous mind set that ‘this tube is full’, no it wasn’t full it was half empty. It is ridiculous how many can fit into one MTR (yes, I’m looking at you Blue line, try Lao Jie and last train of the night). Sometimes, even I go ‘is that a western person?!’ and look at them like it would be weird to saw one in Longgang.
Shenzhen to me is: loud, sometimes dirty, people everywhere, chicken and other animals too in the streets and in supermarkets (it is so weird to see that…), you pay 10RMB for a food and it is better than basically 80% of the Chinese food I have had in Finland, people smiling and giving giggle look when you try to communicate with Mandarin (I’m pro already, I don’t say anymore ‘this, thank you’ in restaurants when I’m making order, I can do ‘one portion of this, take away, thank you), you never know what is going to happen in one night, next day place you go for lunch may not have stairs anymore (true story) , or fence which is going over the office might have a door in it (it was not there last night), or maybe there is a building that was not there the other day. There is chaos every morning in Buji, it is like a jungle you have to look everywhere, and by that I don’t mean the regular Finnish style of crossing the streets (for those who have no idea what this is, this is how crossing a street is teach to us: first you look left, then right and then again left, if there is no cars you can carefully cross the street). In here you need to have eyes in your back too (and of course the light in the middle is so short that everyone is having a 100 m race to get to the other side, before it turns into red).
Size of the city is huge, there is everything. If you’re in a need of a holiday you just go to Shekou, any of the OCT:s, Grand Theater or Window of the world (just to name few…). Those are the places I go when I need bit of a rest from everything I stated above, or just for the sake to get myself out of this world (by that I don’t mean Coco Park and bar street, I was actually talking about my Kindle, coffee and muffin form Starbucks in Grand Theater). This city has everything you thought there is, and everything that you did not know that even exists. All of this won’t mean that there is no cons. There is, as much as I love this city, it has remind me of many things I have forget, or took as a granted.
Equality, that is one of the things I have started to appreciate even more after my time being in somewhere else than in Finland. You can really feel the difference when you cross the border of my homeland (and by no means it is perfect in Finland either, but I can see and feel the difference). Things like free education, which I have took as a granted before, feels like one the biggest privileged I’ve got in my entire life. Even when media has become biased everywhere and there is propaganda in all of the sides, the fact that I can a) think as I want about things b) I’m encourage to look critically the sources I use c) say my thoughts out loud, in any media I want and whomever I like is something that is not reality to everyone in this world. Actually it is quite small percentage of the population of the human beings that are able to do that. I’ve started to see world different, and same time see that things I complained about before… might have not been actual issues.
The stories about people working 24/7 in a factories don’t seem that far away anymore. It does not sound fairy tale to make you feel bad, it is actually happening. All the time, everywhere. There is stories about the fact that human nature is this way, that how this is the way ‘the world rolls’. But when we will have enough of suffering, financial crises, recessions, killing… when the line will be crossed hands are thrown up in the air. When we will admit that maybe it is time to change the way of thinking? When we are brave enough to question all the things we are willing to buy and get in the sake of ‘happiness’? When in real world only few, or none of those things have to do with happiness. Society has created the way we have to think, and it has pour it into our heads since early childhood. We won’t even notice that this is not how I am thinking, this is how I was taught to think. Are we too afraid to question ourselves and our motives behind our actions?
I have no answers to these questions, and there is me who loves to dress up and do shopping, me who likes to see ‘sales’ …. everywhere, who reacts back to the way things are marketed to us, me who thinks the way I was thought to think, me who put labels everywhere and sometimes acts in ways that I shouldn’t, me who hurts other people for purposes I don’t even know, me who is proud of my accomplishments, me who is selfish and silly.
So, where do all of this leads to?
“Life, the Universe, and Everything. There is an answer. But, I’ll have to think about it”