The things I think

I have some things to say, I hope you can listen. They are not nice words to hear, they are not the things you want to hear, they are not the things you expect to hear. You may also disagree with what I say and that’s fine please maintain your own opinion.

I have lived in China for 4 years now. China is not a country I expect you to love expect you to hate or anything. I however love the people, the culture, the food, the traveling, and spirit of China. Look at Libai one of the most profound poets of ancient Chinese literature, renowned for being a drunk who loved to travel (The dream job, yes? No? Ok… Fine..).

However there has been some behavior that has truly gotten on my nerves. Many will say I have been brainwashed, and maybe so, but I also have seen the changes made with my own eyes.

I believe in social isolation and quarantining.

I spent 40+days without leaving my complex.

Yet I feel a need to provide a little back story as to how I was convinced social quarantining was necessary.

On DEC 31 a classmate of mine and I sat on my couch and discussed the trending topic on weibo (Chinese twitter) that said “new respiratory disease” and we wondered about the consequences it would have. We had no idea things would turn out like this.

A month later I sent an email to my family letting them know I was ok. I took appropriate measures. I started to SOCIALLY ISOLATE. Then social isolation got the best of me after 4 days and I saw an ex because he still had my sweater and I wanted coffee. He returned my favorite sweater but I did not get my coffee, so it was still a win of sorts. But then my brain was like where is my coffee, and he was said ‘I still love you’ a lot. It was more stress then necessary, and I learned my lesson.

After that mess it was easy to convince myself to stay home, not only because I might do another stupid thing, but also because I knew I had taken an unnecessary risk. It was great to have time to self reflect and do things I have been meaning to do. I bonded with my kitty, I read Harry Potter in Chinese, I cleaned my house, I started reading the wheel of time, I started doing some research for school, and I got to work through ways for self improvements that have needed to happen.

But I have gone a little off topic. Back to socially isolating.

Living in China most cities have a high population. In Wuhan alone there are 11.9 million people. The fact that Wuhan was put on a total lockdown was super important to keeping numbers down in China, and it was affective, the methods were drastic but affective. However there were people that did not believe that they needed or were not willing to cooperate with the lockdown. This alone increased numbers in cities like Beijing and Shanghai. There was a lady who suppressed her symptoms who went to France and infected other people. There was a case of someone in my province who left Wuhan, and infected people in my province.

Its so important to limit your interactions outside when you don’t know who might be infected, and you don’t know if you will get infected either. If you can just do what the health leaders say for a few months things WILL get better.

In China we are still encouraged to self isolate. Malls are starting to open again, there are very few places that allow indoor dining, and still going into grocery stores, and malls and the few indoor dining places open al require you to have your temperature taken, and you are supposed to register so that if anyone that gets sick its easier to contact more potentially sick people. It has also been legally required that people wear masks when leaving the house, so when I got a haircut both me and the stylist wore masks. And all these efforts to make things better show (the masks being a touchy topic I know, but it is law in China at the moment). China has had no new local instances for 2 days (which is amazing). Are there issues, and things to be worked on and things that can be better? Yes! There are things that I was not happy about. I had to get an entry exit pass for complex that allowed me to leave every other day (I wasn’t leaving my house anyways but it did make me uncomfortable).

Haircut
My getting a haircut with a mask on.

HOWEVER!!! I understand that its hard to come to term with the sacrifices that need to be made to self quarantine and social isolate. I am happy to make the sacrifice not only for my own health and safety and for everyone else’s health and safety. When the choice is to sacrifice my daily vices and comforts for two months, rather than worry about the health and safety of everyone for months on months on months I will gladly go with the sacrificing those vices so that things get better faster.

I hurt so much for the pain that is happening in the world right now. It really digs into my heart to think that so many people are struggling. But I also believe that the world will recover, but lets do what we can to make that happen faster than it is right now.

Please socially isolate, and stop buying all the toilet paper.

With love

-Sydney Sconey

Mer Krismas!

Merry Christmas all!!

The last few weeks have been an avalanche of school work, and I am almost done digging myself out, but for Christmas I did take a small break and enjoyed the holidays in a two part series.

On Christmas Eve a classmate had reached out to me saying he had gotten Nini a toy and was wondering when he could give it to me. Eventually we settled on him and a few other classmates coming to my house and them making food. It was a nice and quiet Christmas eve and we got to talk about our life experiences and discovered some similarities, and some differences between the four of us. It was a great way to get to know my classmates, especially because I find that its easiest to talk to my classmates not when not in a classroom.

Then on the morning of Christmas a friend from the states and I went on a hike to the big budha just out of the city. She’s been in Taiyuan for 2 years and had yet to go. So we decided to just go and count that as our Christmas activity of the year, a short hike, which happens to be a tradition of her family.

It was a short hike, but it was nice to spend Christmas morning with such an important friend to my TY life. We didn’t do many pictures, but we did see a deer with a backwards head, and I took some pictures with my camera which was nice. (I do love a reason to take my camera out to play.)

It was a wonderful Christmas though I miss Christmas at home, it’s my fourth Christmas away from home, and I miss Christmas more than I used too, nostalgia can be a messy and powerful emotion. However I also am better at maintaining a balance of compensating, and play.

Looking forward to the next time I get to spend Christmas at home again.  (Will probably still be a few years, but its something I without a doubt look forward too.)

With love,

Sconey Sydney

Picture Play

Last weekend I helped a friend propose to his girlfriend (also my friend). It was an extravagant weekend and she was thoroughly surprised. Though it was also a good weekend for learning some new things about Chinese culture.

The hotel we stayed at that night had many sets of wonderful cute little courtyards with three rooms, a dining room, a chess room, and in the middle  a hot spring tub. Its a renovated Chinese castle type structure that belonged to the Shanxi Wang family, it’s called the Wang Family Compound. It consists of three parts the third part being the hotel, the other two parts being specifically designated as a tourism spot.

There is a lot of history, and a lot of it is concerning the hierarchy of the upper class structure from the 1600’s to 1900’s. Things such as the architecture being based around fengshui, as well as the architecture being based on teachings of filial piety. For instance there are murals with pictures depicting puns for messages such as, honor your elders, and give birth to as many sons as possible.

Unfortunately I didn’t get any pictures of the murals, but I did take a few pictures of some of the architecture there, and I played around with them a little bit, let me know what you think.

Pretty architecture picture

Originals of edits

Edits

Let me know what you think. It took a while to update the blog but its been a busy few weeks with school. Hope everyone is well!

Sconey Sydney

Basically, nothing.

A few weeks ago I came back to Taiyuan, being back in the states already feels like a dream. But that’s how these things go. School has proved to only increase its work load again, that paired with studying for tests, I’ve barely had time to let my brain rest, and mini naps hunched over my desk have become my best friend. My notebook slowly is starting to show an oily print of my face… So I am going to try and be better about my self hygene too…. Because gross.

Upon returning back there was a fair bit of drama of trying to get into my house, and get electricity, those issues have all been resolved now. I just need to clean my fridge. I had mistaken my fridge from broken, but the reality of the situation actually was just a long term of no electricity, so my curries, and spices, etc condiments have started to exude wonderful fragrances whenever the fridge is opened.

Additionally, the vpn I have been using to access the outside world has broken, and I no longer have access to facebook, instagram, twitter, etc.

But things have been good. Nini loves when I come home, and sleeps right next to me, but does not like when I try and pet her while she lies next to me. I’m looking forward to the time I get used to the workload this semester and I can finally let my brain rest instead of feeling like a zombie.

–Sydney Sconey

I need a job.

Job Post:

Looking for a job.

Anything in the Lindon, PG, Orem, Provo area will do really. As long as I can start June 18th, and must leave on August 29th. It’s not a lot of time, is it? Which is fine. I’m simply looking for something that will help me save for my next two years abroad.

As an international student in China, it’s been very hard to find the time and finances to come home. To be honest I have lots of time, but the finances is the hardest part. I can travel for a month in Southern Asian countries for what one trip homes flight tickets cost me. Yet… I am coming a little low on my finances, and thus this trip home will also be applying for jobs.

Resume:

Sydney Leake

22 years old, Chinese Zodiac: Rat, Astrological Zodiac: Capricorn (I think).

Address: Homeless, but kicking it up at my parents till I go back to China, then I’ll find new digs.

Proud aunt/mother of cat: Nini, age: unknown, sex: female. She’ll be living with a friend while I visit home.

Availability: June 18th-August 29th

Self Introduction:

I grew up on a little cul-de-sac in not a little town, but not a big one either, in neither a little, not a big yellow house. I once moved to Florida for a year, but then something happened, and there was a snake in our pool, and so we moved back to Utah, idk, It was something like that, I was 4 years old. I went to kindergarten, elementary, middle, and high school in Lindon, Utah. I’ve made lots of friends and I’ve lost lots of friends. I’ve had some jobs, and I’ve quit some jobs. I moved to China 3 years ago on a motivated whim, I intended to stay for a year, and somehow am still here, as a university student. Currently studying journalism at a small university in China.

Preferred job positions:

·        Coffee shop barista

·        Landscaping snake-less lawns

·        Clothes retailer

·        Fast food team member

·        Food truck team member

·        Waitress

·        Cook (I don’t know how to, but I’m sure I could learn)

·        Chinese Translator

·        Spanish Translator, sorry, not that. I… No… No comprende espanol.

·        Morning Stock person

·        Afternoon Stock person

·        Evening Stock person

·        Middle of the night stock person

·        Hiking buddy

·        Dog walker

·        Account creation

·        Movie buddy

·        Sushi buddy

·        I’d say punching bag, but to be honest I’m afraid of pain, and encouraging violence is not something I agree with.

·        Concert buddy

·        Computer programming – something I highly enjoy but only understand very basic concepts of.

·        HR, currently studying journalism, it has some correlations.

·        Journalist!

·        Photographer

·        Photojournalist

·        Journalism related thing?

·        Etc.

As you can see I am up for a wide variety of jobs, I just really want a job while I’m back home.

Past work experience:

2016-current: Off and on private English tutor for Chinese children in their homes. Select teaching material: aka as look up favorite fairytales and movies, and help the children learn oral English, as well as written English.

2015-2016: Account Creation Representative, and member of the Space Monkey team at Vivint.  Help new customers create and establish their new Vivint accounts. Space Monkey is a cloud service exclusive to Vivint customers.

2015-2015: Sweeto Burrito Team Member. Took customer orders, counted the drawer (sometimes twice), shmeared sauces on burritos, burned myself during rushes cooking fries, and onion rings.

Etc..

Education:

2017-current Bachelors student in journalism at Shanxi University.

2010-2015- High school, Karl G. Maeser Preparatory Academy.

Conclusion:

Please.

Hire me? I’m a good worker, and if you don’t like me even better I’ll be out of your hair before you know it. But really I am a good worker just looking for a job. Because I am just hoping to be more financially stable for my next two years of college life.

Driving circles ’round you

Taiyuan(太原) is a small place, for China. With a measly 4 million people living here it’s barely a blip on the map, literally just a blip. Being the capital of the Shanxi(山西) province its well known in China for being unknown, well that and disgustingly rich owners of coal companies. The economy in Shanxi also falls behind nearly every province in China, excluding Xinjiang(新疆). Nevertheless there are a few areas surrounding Taiyuan well known for tourists, such as Pingyao(平遥), and…. well that’s pretty much it.

Most of the tourism industries in Shanxi(山西) is geared to residents of the Shanxi province, and being so the concept of a tourism economy is still growing, and developing. They are attempting multiple approaches to gather a stronger tourism following, and increase the economy of their province. They are attempting this through methods such as mock ancient villages with traditional style homes, crafts, and local food.  A classic version of this is the previously mentioned Pingyao. Walking through the walls into the ancient city is nearly like being transported into time, except that everyone has cellphones, and they were the same clothes as we do know, and there are many coffee shops, and tour golf carts. You know its totally 100% authentic.

 

Regardless Pingyao is a wonderful place to visit as a AAAAA world heritage site it has many interesting museums including some of the worlds first banks, as well as a glimpse into a traditional northern China martial arts school. There are also many traditional foods unique to Pingyao that are well worth a try. Particular the beef noodles(牛肉面), and also donkey cakes(驴肉并).

But that’s enough about Pingyao for now. Shanxi has other areas that are establishing a tourism centered environment, for example Fenyang(汾阳), known for its production of fenjiu(汾酒) a kind of Chinese white wine specific to Shanxi. Yuncheng(运城) as well is developing a tourism centered environment using glass bottomed mountain slides and glass bridges as bait to lure tourists there. In Changzhi (长治)there is a fairly famous mountain, known for its clear waters, and even good enough for some decent rock climbing. Etc, etc.

Though strangely enough in Taiyuan the main course of action to build a tourism environment is through tactics such as building staircase hiking paths, or beautiful pathways alongside the river, and a 3 tier circular bridge specifically designed for the purpose of inconveniencing those that have motion sickness, or a fear of heights. There is even a zoo built in Taiyuan that made international headlines due to the conditions of the caging areas, in specific a photo of a panda eating trash was attached to the article. (http://www.china.org.cn/china/2016-10/09/content_39449072.htm)

Considering however that Taiyuan is still in a stage of development the signs of improvement are promising, and encouraging that in the future they can increase and strengthen their tourism economy as well as their business economy etc. With the main method of play in Taiyuan consisting of shopping, or drinking the development of tourism in any form is a nice surprise.

Now a tourism site that was recently developed in Taiyuan which has become popular despite it being fairly useless, and was probably a waste of many resources is the 3 ring bridge. 

(Photo above curtesy of sina news, photo’s below taken with canon rebel t6)

 

Regardless it is a good place to go and enjoy a sunset or even a sunrise. Unfortunately for this attraction the funding ran out before it could be finished in entirety, originally there was going to be a park built in the valley leading up to the 3 tier bridge, but after the funding ran out the park was unfinished, however despite the park being unfinished the views are still good. The bridge itself also provides for a fun background for playing with photography.

Taiyuan is still developing more tourism outlets, but it is also progressing and working on creating a fun and creative way to interact with the nature around us. If one finds themselves stuck in ty with nothing to do going for a drive around this loop provides a nice way to occupy ones time.

19+3 =

It’s 2019, 2019, 2019, the important things in life deserve to be said in sets of three. 2019 is a year I have been looking forward to and dreading since all of last year.

I look forward to it, because I’m continuously suprising myself with the things that I have done since graduating high school. I really never even dared to do more than dream, and fantasize about living the kind of life that I have now. And now I have this really cool life where I get to continuously stress over not passing tests because I’m the foreign exchange student, and I get stared at every where I go, and I have to budget my money (and almost immediately forget I have a budget and spend way to much anyways). I also have been able to travel to other countries, and make friends with so many incredible people.

And I continuously dread it. How can I top the past year, or the year before that? How is it that I still struggle so much with my Chinese, what happens next year when the material I wouldn’t even be able to understand in English, I have to learn in Chinese. How do I survive school. It’s only been 3 semesters, but it already feels like 3 years. So many uncertainties, and so many things that I can overthink!

However regardless of all that I do believe in small fun coincidences, I believe that 2019 will be a good year! I’ll struggle some, and I’ll love some, and I’ll hate some, but I’ll also thrive (at least, I will when my school schedule allows me that liberty).

The happiest coincidence to me of this year is that it is 2019, it is also my 3rd year in China, and I turned 22 this year (19+3=22). I’m not a huge fan of numbers, so I don’t understand why all these numbers make me so happy this year, but hey sometimes we convince our selves that little coincidences are happy omens right?

I’m looking forward to the next semester as stressful as it will be, and with as many difficulties as it will have I am still looking at it as a year that will help me grow. I wont be able to travel as much this year, but I’ll be able to learn how to ground myself, and study more (well, hopefully).

So for me the year of 2019 is much more than about resolutions, and doing or being more than I am. It’s a year to take a step back, focus on my schooling, focus on learning, and when summer comes around hopefully I will be able to focus a lot more on my family.

So here’s to my 22nd year of living, and to the year of 2019! May it end in personal growth, and strengthened bonds.

With love,

Me.

Only one question for today: Did you complete any resolution (or goal) that you made last year? (Yes +20, no -30)

Lets talk about Yunnan

Yunnan is a province in the southern west portion of China, it is bordered by Tibet, Laos, Myanmar, in short it has all the makings of a really cool place.

I’ve been routed through Kunming the capital of the province many times now, traveling to Thailand, and too and from Laos, and Myanmar. Last week was the first time I actually got to explore any part of Yunnan, and even though it meant I had to buy flights, and that I had to skip school I had the greatest time, and my only regret is that I didn’t spend more time there. Though there’s never enough time to explore the places we travel.

Now lets talk about one of the best 3 day vacations I’ve had in my life. I set out for Kunming on Wednesday, and had a full day layover transfer wait thing. Which was fine by me, just gave me an excuse to head into town and explore. I wasn’t sure where to go because the nature spots I would have loved to see were to far out of town to do and not tire myself out for the next day(or spend more money than I should seeing as a mini vacation probably wasn’t the best decision for my finances as is). So I settled on just getting lost in the city.

During the course of the day I found myself at a mall, a market, and two different parks. Because I didn’t really plan anything and I was more interested in looking at my surroundings I honestly don’t remember the names of the places I visited. Oooops. But the two highlights of my wandering were watching the aunties dance Guangchangwu, and then watching people feed birds with white bread (poor birdies, they don’t even know that bread is bad for them. So it was sad to watch, but I took a few pictures while there of the birdies). Overall my time in Kunming was well spent, and happily spent.

 

The next day I set out for Jinghong the capital of the Xishuangbanna county. I arrived and picked up a taxi and got settled in my hostel where I met a really cool lady, who biked from ENGLAND TO CHINA, and is going to continue to bike for 4 more  months, and then go walk the length of New Zealand. Me and her chatted for a while and then I went and explored the rest of the city. I also went and accomplished my mission for my mini vacation go and explore an art gallery.

The art gallery itself is a cute English styled old building, that is a cultural heritage site. It was constructed by catholic missionaries and used as a hospital for a while. Now its an art gallery with exhibits switching every 3 weeks or so.

The worker on shift at the time I went was a cute old man that insisted I drink tea with him when I finished browsing the gallery. We drank tea and chatted for a while. He’s an interesting character that not three tiny cups of tea in disappeared to go grab a bag of lemons and give them to me. He then described their medicinal purposes, and reiterated how to make hot lemonade for 15 minutes. I also found out over the course of our conversation that he had worked with the Chinese military in their propaganda department for 20 years before retiring from the military, and starting a career in journalism for the Xishuangbanna Newspaper.

The Xishuangbanna Newspaper is interesting because its produced in two languages, Chinese, as well as the local dialect Dai. He was a reporter in both languages as well which is really cool.

After chatting with him for a few hours, and a few of his friends that came over as well I went to see if I could watch the sunset from the river in the middle of the city. I quickly discovered that wasn’t an option, but got some cool pics by the side of river.

 

The last day of my mini vacay I was unsure of what to do, I hadn’t been sure before how long it would take to look through the whole exhibit so when it only took half a day that left me with a free day. Which left me with the opportunity to go explore a tea mountain. In this area of Yunnan they produce a very famous kind of tea, Pu’er tea, it’s drunk all over china, and it can be seen as a symbol of status as its a kind of tea when produced in brick form people will store, and the older it is the more its worth. It’s a nice kind of tea and it has certain medicinal properties, and is a particular favorite in winter.

The mountain I decided to go to is called South Nuo Mountain, the Nuo means glutinous rice, another product in that region. They even produce a kind of Pu’er tea that incorporates the rice leaves, it’s a very fragrant tea.

I travelled to the mountain via a intercounty bus, and just told the bus driver to let me off when we got to the mountain. And when I got off the bus I had to figure out how to get to where it was I wanted to go. Which was difficult because I didn’t know where that was. So I asked one of the locals which direction to go was best and she pointed to the east, and so east I did head. I walked up a mountain road in the mist for about an hour before hitting a mini community, and then headed back down as it was the end of the road.

 

On the way back down I noticed a store had opened, and I went in to talk to them.

Them being a couple, husband and wife, the wifes name was Wanjia. They invited me to sample some of their tea, and so I drank tea with them for a couple of hours, maybe 5 or 6 hours. We tried 7 or 8 different kinds of Pu’er tea, each one unique. During this time they asked about where I was from and why I would come to China to study, and why I was in Xishuangbanna. I asked them about how they met, some of the customs in the area, if the tea farming was a family business, and much more. They told me how his father had been asked to make tea on a plot of land, and so they started the family business. I learned that they met in Menghai, a city half an hours drive away, she is from and worked there when he met her, and he fell in love and married her. So many stories like this.

The part where they really got talkative was when we talked about the traditional wear in their minority. It’s different from other minorities, though it has many similarities to the other minorities in the area, even to those of some minorities in Laos and Myanmar. The husband then pulled out a piece of embroidery his wife was working on, and they explained that when they got married the clothing she wore was embraided by her mother in law. And that she is embroiding a new piece now to have a new set of clothes for the next time the dance. The dance for various festivals during the year, but mostly during weddings. WeChat Image_20181218181554 Then the wife asked if I would like to go out back and take some photos of their tea trees, of course I said yes. So we went out on to the mountain and I got to practice some more photography there.

When we got back they fed me one of the best meals I’ve had in China, it was very traditional Yunnan food, but it had a bit of a Myanmar feel to it, it was amazing. I stayed and chatted with them a little while longer, and bought some tea from them, and then I decided it was about time to head back into town.

That pretty much sums up my mini vacation, it was amazing and relaxing, and I hope to go back soon. Next time spending some more time there, not just three days.

Give a thank

Normally I don’t give a thank, not as much as I should, but really there are a lot of things I should give a thank about. So here’s a list 15 things I give a thank about:

  1. Parents: I forget to tell them, and the people around them how much I love them, but they forgive me for that. They also raised me, and so big shout out to them, because I could have broken bones, gotten stitches, gotten surgery, died, or worse been expelled only a few hundred times, but I’m still here.
  2. Siblings: We don’t talk anymore, jk, we talk when I happen to be in the same physical vicinity as them, and once or twice a year through email, but I know that they love me, and that they support me. So thanks to them for not killing me when I was a child, and annoying. I’m still annoying, but we have the distance to help with that buffer.
  3. Nephews: I have the 2 sweetest nephews in the world. I’ve only been able to spend a little bit of time with them, but they are adorable, and sweet, and I miss them every day. (Sometimes more than anyone else in my family, but shush… Don’t let them know.)
  4. Grandparents: I underestimated the influence, and importance of grandparents as a child. Understandably, I was a child, but also regrettably. I’ve tried to be better with appreciating them in my life, but sometimes when you live on the other side of the world it’s harder to know how to convey all the things you want to say and do.
  5. The steps:  I didn’t know what having steps would be like in my own life. However I am thankful for the ones that I got. Thank you to all members of my step families, you’ve shown my family love, and acceptance, especially in times when we needed it. You aren’t really my step family, but my bonus family.
  6. Friends: I’ve been adopted by different friends at different points in my life, and in many cases those friendships drifted and we would stop talking, but in a few cases I was able to extend my already ginormous family. I’m thankful for those friends that accepted me, and let me accept them as well.
  7. Pets: Growing up my family had a variety of pets from puppies, to chickens, to rabbits, rats, fish, and a gerbil, we learned a lot about compassion, and unconditional love, and the fact that sometimes just because you love something doesn’t mean it knows it should not destroy your books, clothing, shoes, or devour your food.
  8.  The yellow house: I lived the majority of my life in a yellow house, in front of a mountain, at the start of a cul-de-sac, next to a barn that sometimes had cows, and sometimes had horses. There was a little orchard lining the driveway on one side, and a great big backyard with a little garden and dilapidated chicken coop, and a great big willow tree that towered over a swing set and sandbox. What a wonderful place to be able to spend my childhood.
  9. Neighbors: Growing up my best friend lived in my back yard, meaning our backyards touched, and we would literally walk into each others houses. I had many meals at her house, and she had many at mine. Now living in a building that easily houses more than 600 people of which I know no one, sometimes I get nostalgic about the relations between neighbors when I was young.
  10. Postcards: The first time I remember receiving a postcard was when my parents went to Hawaii in 2008, the postcard had a turtle on it, and my mom had told me a little about Hawaii. I got it 8 days after they had already come home. Later a friend told me about how she collected postcards, and that started a tradition of me buying postcards in mass. Every time I would go somewhere new I would by tons of postcards. Now I buy postcards and send them to my family, Idk if they enjoy them as much as I enjoy writing them, but it’s one of the ways that I let them know I am ok.
  11. China: At one point in my life I wanted to become a business women, I was set on learning 4 languages by the time I finished high school, and so as a freshman I picked Chinese, and somehow my plan hit a few bumps and I not only wanted to learn Chinese, I wanted to master it, and I wanted to visit China, somehow I found myself in this wonderful country 5 years after I decided to learn the language. Who knew learning a language would be what would propel me to travel, and experience, and grow out of my comfort zone?
  12. Travel: I’ve always wanted to travel, had a secret desire to be that person that could go on adventures on their vacations, and then somehow it became a reality. (A little less of a reality as I make more and more plans for my near future, and certain life expenses are starting to catch up with me.) THE FACT THAT I HAVE BEEN TO 9 COUNTRIES BLOWS MY MIND EVERYDAY, IT’S NOT EVEN THAT MANY, BUT AFTER GRADUATING HIGHSCHOOL I WAS NEVER SURE I WOULD NEVER MAKE IT ANYWHERE BUT MAYBE MEXICO AND CANADA. BUT NOW I am a foreign exchange student in China, and I can go on weekend getaways whenever I want, and I can travel to other countries just for the fun of it. I’ve expressed my appreciation for this before, but it’s time that I gave a hard thank to travel. It’s opened my mind, and blessed my life in so many ways.
  13. Scholarships: Without my scholarship I wouldn’t be in school, probably at all. In the U.S. I would have had to work 30 to 40 hours a week just to keep up with school expenses, and here I have the advantage to have a full ride scholarship, and I don’t have to pay a penny for my schooling (only equipment like cameras).
  14. vaRietY: It’s nice to be able to experience something other than just going to school everyday, or going to work everyday. It’s so easy to put stress on yourself to go to every class, but that kind of attitude eats me, literally. Having the opportunities to either go listen to a talk, or even go to photography festival (all good things to do) make my school life so much easier to handle, and much more enjoyable.
  15. LOVE: I love so many things in this world, and sometimes I forget to share my love with the people, and things that I love. For that I am sorry, but let me just reaffirm that I love my friends, my family, my pet(s), the countries I’ve been to, the experiences I have had I love my life, and everything that is a part of it. I love that there are people that love me in return, and I love that I have homes in two very different but important places. Love is magic, and don’t you ever forget it.
     

Time for some points!

Name 5 things you should give a thank about: (10 points)

What is your earliest memory of thanksgiving? (15 points)

Are your Christmas decorations up? (10 for yes, -5 for no)

Nee Nee asks for help

 

I’ve been at this home for a while now, the human that lives here isn’t home very much, and when she is home she likes to play with the shiny red dot that no matter how hard I try I cant catch. When I try and play with her while she’s sitting in my spots (all the spots are my spots) she gets upset sometimes. I didn’t know why before, but then I noticed that sometimes I use my mice catchers when I play with her that way, and sometimes they hurt her.

Sometimes when she is home she starts dragging a stick on the ground, and she gathers all the dirt I carefully spread across the ground and puts it in one spot, I don’t understand why she does that. One time I decided to help her by putting them all around the floor again, I layed in the pile and I rolled, and I rolled. She looked at me and made the strange sound she makes when I like her the most, and she is in her best mood. But then she moved me, and I looked at her face and she didn’t seem that happy anymore. But what do I care, I can go find some more dust somewhere else to spread around the house, I’m certain.

Also how do I get her to stop from using the noisy thing that has a big light, when her paws are own it I can’t stand it, but sometimes there are tiny humans that make strange noises, and I like watching them with the human. WeChat Image_20181114183527

The worst thing is that she is the one responsible for giving me my food and drink, and sometimes she isn’t home all day, and sure there’s some dry food, but all I really want is the wet stuff. My favorite kind is the chicken. I get really frustrated when she doesn’t give me the chicken in the morning and I sometimes yell at her, all morning if I have to. I want the chicken. It’s hard to get used to the other food when I know that maybe there is some of the good stuff in the house somewhere.

It’s also not cool that she leaves the house so much, because when she’s not there I can’t sleep underneath the couch, I have to open her wardrobe, and rearrange all her clothing so that I have a place to sleep that’s not her bed, or the weird basket that she likes to try and put me in. It’s soft, but why would I want to sit in a perfect me sized basket or cubby when I can take the whole wardrobe, and cover all her clothing in my fur.

My favorite time of day is definitely when she comes home and it’s not dark outside, and she sits on the weird ground cushion, and eats. Sometimes I will go an sit on her. She seems to like that, when I do that she will stay in one place for an entire sleep of mine. And she will scratch me so I don’t have to scratch myself. WeChat Image_20181114183459

I miss my old human a lot, she took me in at a time when I didn’t know if I could trust humans. Its been hard without my old human, and this new human does things in a different way than she had. I don’t know if I like her that much, but I know that she is trying.

But all of this is besides the point, I need help. How can I get my human, to not want to pet me so much. The human likes to scratch me even when I am not itchy! How do I get this to stop, because playing with the human does not seem to work well enough. 

 

Love Nee Nee

(Sconey here, I choose to feed my cat a dry and wet food balance. I know there are different opinions on what kind of diet is best for cats, but for my situation this is the best diet for Neenee. Also due to neighbors and risks of complaints I have Neenee kept in my bedroom while I am not home, she has access to a cat playset, toys, food, water, litter. And I love my kitty and it takes all my self control to not post more pictures of her all over social media.)

Questions:

  1. If you have ever had a pet what was your favorite thing to do with them? (10 points)
  2. If you could have any pet what would it be? (5 points)