An Atypical Chinese Lady

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Dec 8, 2016 01:37
“Hi S.P.! Could you do me a favor? Get a few certificates notarized for me, scan them, and send them to me? I’m applying for a visa to Kenya,” C. texted me last night.

“No problem,” I replied.

C. is my former college classmate, an outgoing lady who likes to laugh. She was one of my closest friends at school. She's very popular and admired among her former classmates, because she’s a “crazy” person who has many accomplishments that we can’t imagine being able to do. During college summer vacations, incredibly, she bicycled Hainan, Tibet, and across Europe.

At the time of graduation, most of us were searching for secure jobs, while she went to work as a volunteer for an NGO. After graduation, she went to Yunnan, China, to work in an environmental NGO, where she partnered with youths from around the world.

There too, she quickly gained popularity among her colleagues. At school, she was not perceived to be particuarly pretty because she had tanned skin from years of riding outdoors. (In East Asia, girls who have light skin are often considered more beautiful.) But at the workplace, she was considered gorgeous by the Western guys. It was said that many of them eagerly pursued her. In the end, she started a relationship with a Brit.

She dated him for two years. I once tentatively asked her, in a Chinese way, “Have you ever discussed marriage with him?” She answered, “Nah. British folks don’t think about marriage very much while dating. I’ll never push him. Just let things run their own course.” In the end, the British guy proposed to her near a volcanic crater in Indonesia. How romantic that was!

Now, they've resigned from their jobs and started traveling around the world. I’d say she’s definitely not a typical Chinese lady. In our culture, spending so much time traveling and experiencing the world, instead of finding a steady job, is considered "dangerous." But now that she’s going to marry a Western guy, it doesn’t matter whether or not she fits into our culture. Living the life she wants is the most important thing.

I encouraged her to write down what she saw and felt on the trip, and to have her writing published some time, as a well-known female Taiwanese writer did decades ago. “I hope to do so,” C. said, laughing.

[Revised]
中国女汉纸

C微信上联系我:“SP在吗?能帮我个忙不?帮我把一些资料盖章,然后扫描过来发给我。我要办肯尼亚的签证。”

我回复道“没问题啊!”

C是我的大学同学。性格外向,喜欢笑,是我大学里面玩的很好的朋友。她在同学中很受欢迎,大家也很钦佩她。因为她做了很多疯狂的壮举,我们都想都不敢去想做的事情。大学暑假的时候,她骑自行车穿越海南岛,西藏和欧洲。

我们大学毕业的时候,我们大多数都想找稳定的工作,而她打算去NGO做志愿者。毕业后,她去了云南一个环保NGO,和一群来自世界各地的年轻人工作。

同样的,她在同事中也很受欢迎。在学校的时候,她并不是被认为是一个美女,因为她常年在外骑行,皮肤黝黑。在东亚,女生皮肤以白为美。但在工作的地方,很多西方国家的小伙都在追求她,最后她和一个英国人在了一起。

她和英国人谈了两年。我有一次尝试性地问她,用中国人的方式问道,“你和他讨论过结婚没有啊?”她回答道,“没有。英国人在约会的时候不会太考虑结婚的事情。我不会催他。顺其自然吧!”最后,那个英国小伙在印尼的一个火山口向她求婚,超级浪漫!

现在他们辞职,开始了全球旅行。我想说她不是一个典型的中国女生。在我们文化里面,这是一种非常危险的行为,花那么多时间旅行,不找一份稳定的工作呆着。不过,既然她要嫁给一个英国人,要不要融入中国文化也没那么重要了。过自己想要的生活是最重要的事情。

我鼓励她在旅行中记录下来自己的所见所感,有朝一日出版,和三毛一样。“哈哈,希望吧!”她回答道。