The University for Foreigners has an incredibly large population of Chinese students. Most are looking towards art or medical school when they come to study here. Unsurprisingly, there are many restaurants and supermarkets that cater to this large population. One of the best fast-food Chinese restaurants is very close to my house and is always full. It’s normal to wait 45 minutes for your food and many more to master the chopsticks.
Recently, I’d been invited to dine with some Chinese friends at their house. The food was absolutely astounding. The meat was so tender it fell off the bone. At this point I was tired of having to go out or impose on my friends every time I wanted Chinese food. So I decided I would learn how to cook “cibo Cinese” and I asked one of my friends to teach me.
Today I learned to make beef and potato stew, beef and egg stir-fry, cabbage stir-fry, and pasta with fried onions. I can barely use a fork and cook spaghetti while Zhang Liang can cook a four course meal and do it with two little batons of bamboo. Great culinary envy was experienced today.
Besides the Chinese food, I’ve also found an Indian restaurant. This foodie is happy!!!! I’m also happy because of the contemplative type of week I’ve had. I’ve had several important realizations about myself. I don’t do yoga, but I think it would feel the same and maybe have the same results.
For the first time in years, I feel like I’ve had some relief from my chronic depression. Depression is a disease that makes your past a nightmare and your future a complete blank. I have never had any future beyond “get degree and get job”. There was no more substantial planning; no characteristics, no dreams, and no feeling of certainty. It was impossible to think any further than the end of the week. Even when I thought I was going to get married, thinking towards the future was nothing more than a game. Nothing felt possible or attainable.
Suddenly as of this week, I have a future. It’s simple. More like a crude sketch than a plan, but for me, this is a huge breakthrough. My plans to work in psychology are unchanged, but I know what I want in my private life. I want chickens and a few pigs. I grew up with all types of animals and have realized that I was always happiest looking after pigs, which are basically giant dogs. Chickens are just too useful. What’s a household without fresh eggs? The answer is: Barbarism.
Life is much simpler when you know who you are. Without the terrible, sickening cloud of depression, I feel like myself. I wish my grandmother and close friend, who both passed away late last year, could see me now. I think I’m a very different person than the last time I saw them.