“My dear Frodo!’ exclaimed Gandalf. ‘Hobbits really are amazing creatures, as I have said before. You can learn all there is to know about their ways in a month, and yet after a hundred years they can still surprise you in a pinch.”
J.R.R. Tokien, The Fellowship of the Ring
Anyone who knows me is aware of my love for Lord of the Rings, and may have even likened my appearance to that of a Hobbit, which I take as a grand compliment. After all it was the littlest of things that embarked such a grand, impossible adventure. As I think of the Halflings’ journey, I cannot help but think of my own.
You may remember me mentioning in an earlier blog post that life here is not as different as I imagined it to be. Perhaps the fact that I’m living in such a large city buffers me from some of the cultural extremes, but still I am startled at just how normal and even familiar everything is. I know it is still early on in the adventure, but I am already beginning to feel content. For quite some time I have known in my heart that I would not permanently live overseas, but that did not ease my desire to see the world. I have always struggled with being content in the same-old, same-old, as well as been subject to the fear of being stuck in one place indefinitely. However, being here even for such a short amount of time is curing me of that. Don’t get me wrong, I am enjoying life here, but my wanderlust is definitely being satiated to a large degree. I still want to see the world, and want to travel, but I see now that I have a purpose back in the United States. It is in my own country, where I understand the inner workings, and am savvy on the cultural subtleties that I can have the biggest impact. This adventure to China is and will always be invaluable, but even more importantly, it is proving insightful.
Until next time.