Connecting Mandarin and English,
It's True - We Are Really Headed to China
(August 7, 2008) (return
days and counting until we board the plane and temporarily close one door
and swing open another. Tears are welling up and travel bags are laid out
and filling. To do lists and lists of things to take are monitored daily.
Finally this trip is very real.
China is everywhere these days for all of
us as the Olympics dominate the news. We will, like you, if you check our
schedule watch the Olympics on TV from our Oregon home. We will miss the
thrill of the sounds, the smells, the energy of the crowds and athletes
but I recommend we meet at the Olympics in Canada in the near future.
Every day we see a new side of China. Some
views are grand, some disturbing. It reminds me of America, but it's different
things that are grand and disturbing. A report that connected the values
of Christianity to successful business practices was a revelation
to us and a argument to the Communist Party to support Christianity. A new
twist on religion.
A note about Chinese Valentine's
Chinese Valentine's Day,
called qi xi, occurs on the seventh day of the seventh month of
the Chinese calendar. That translates to today, August 7, in 2008.
The day comes from a story, a myth, about a love between a cowboy
and the seventh and most beautiful daughter of the Emperor. The
details of the story vary but the theme remains the same. The couple
were placed on the start Altair and Vega and separated by the Milky
Way. On the seventh day of the seventh month the seventh daughter
of the Emperor is allowed to see her husband, the cowboy and their
two children. All the magpies of the world fly to make a bridge
across the chasm, the Milky Way.
Unlike the American Valentine's Day, which the Chinese also celebrate
on February 14, there is little card giving or exchange of romantic
We're packing and wrapping things up, so the
next step in down the gangway and onto the plane. Things should get more
exciting as we step into another world filled with misconceptions and void
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