For The Culture

 

Squatty-potties, hot water, lost in cash, vegetables and starch over meat….and yeah the language. We went from being a major minority in America to a significant yet, rare anomaly here. We went from driving to anywhere we wanted, whenever we wanted, to not being able to catch a cab or bus or go anywhere without strenuous and meticulous planning. It is a lot to take in and this could be simple arrogance talking, sheer vanity peaking to protect pride but we are not experiencing any major culture shock. It could be argued that the shock has not set in yet. The standard of living that we are experiencing is not what we are accustomed to. This city is dusty and grimy. The air pollution is real and it is everywhere. I think that is the largest adjustment. I mean our home is wayy short of what we are accustom to. I went from a 2000 sqr ft place with 4.5 baths to a 650 sqr ft joint with not shower or tub and a toilet that has a mind of its own. The sun though…. it is always hazy outside. No one wears sunglasses around here and a lot of people were surgical masks because of the pollution. Shit is real and I need to protect Us from it (more to follow).

You ask ,who is he? He believes you need to get out more. The world aint safe and you are still alive for the purpose of experiencing more.  Travel the world, see what new experiences and skills you implore. Grow suckah! There is no such thing as comfortable growth. The only question is what are you about and are you being about your business?! That’s it! That is our (my wife and mine) internal dialogue. Don’t give a fuk about what the world is going through or what people are thinking of us. To grow we had to crap on my comfort zone and I know how that looks… but we found a squatty-potty on the other side of the world and let go. I follow the light and the light has nothing to do with my comfort or my mighty deeds. The light IS. My comfort and everything else is window dressings.

 

I want to go outside and play. Play in the fields of life. Play throughout the rest of my life. Play with my wife. We are only given one life, one love, *Wycleff Jean voice*One time! I would rather die with memories than with dreams #gospel #philosophy #preachingtruth but I believe THE LORD will bless mine because we are intentionally and consciously seeking His, the One and only true and divine purpose for our life.

I was walking my campus yesterday and went through the Marxism Department. I don’t know if you can appreciate it but I studied political theory (in the West…) and I am standing in a place where they study Marxism and its practical applications. This is freaking BUG! This is the largest culture shock that I have felt. The realization that we are not living in a camouflaged  #freeland. I mean in reality I am sending this through a VPN to get it out to y’all. For every ill or inconvenience that I write to you through please know that I feel good. I am in the guts of the beast (but so are you….) churning up some goodness. I write a prescription of hope in every class I teach. I influence the influencers. This is my gift, and my wife’s too. Our calling. Our enjoyment. I stand in-front of my classes with so much to say about fulfillment, self-actualization (hip-hop), and walking through to a dreams’ fulfillment. I never knew I had so much in me to give and I never knew I would enjoy giving it so thoroughly. Willing to squat over a hole in the earth, eat strange foods, inhale polluted air..willing to be censored and monitored. Willing to live in conditions that I have risen high above in my lifetime. I love the work that I am doing and I would never have known if I did not get out of my comfort zone. Could I have given to the children in my own zip code? I did! Maybe I could have given more. That’s all bull to me though. I was created to influence the influencers and that is what I did and that is what I am doing. All that extra black-ish you can get the bozack. I have always taught my sons that manhood never has to be proven. What you have to do is be the best you that you can be. I didn’t and I don’t feel it… living up to the Afro-American intellectual hype. I do not believe in any Egyptian gods. I believe in Christ.

 

I know that I am hope and that I am a message for those who’s wavelength I speak on… Black, White, Chinese, Indian, Dyslexic, Autistic, Superfreak, Homosexual, Straight…whatever the perversion, persuasion, or retardation…I Am the light. I am full of a confident calling to change the world, one -at a time. What is your confidence? Where is it taking you? In all posterity and prosperity my brethren I hope it is causing you to be a blessing and not a curse.

 

We exist in the Earth *long pause…. Giving birth. Wallowing in the turf. Arguing over what came first, while we are being decimated down to the last. Everlasting, surpassing attempts of the enemy to keep us standing in the same place looking dumb and sounding smart. Being inadequate with a lot of heart….quit the dumb shit and truly get in where you fit in #ThePlan #TheSweetSurrender #TheTender

First Impressions

That just happened! My wife and I are living in China, Behind the Great Wall. Got certified, applied, interviewed, accepted an offer, tap-danced for the Chinese government a lil bit …. and boom! We have an Asian zip code.  It was not that clean or clear of a process but we are no worse off for the taxing journey.

 

We got to Wuhan, China located in the Hubei Providence on October 22, 2017.  From jump we knew that this was not going to be a vacation. I think we were both hoping that the adventure would be in the vein of a long vacation…but no. The pollution greeted us as we exited the airport. We were greeted by one of the  We had a lot of opportunities that we walked away from. More importantly we accepted a job opportunity with a state run University.  I will tell you why we chose Wuhan. Why we chose to work for Wuhan University of Science and Technology, a branch of the Chinese gov’ment, and what our first impressions have been.

Wuhan seemed to be the most authentic major Chinese city. Most Westerners have not heard of it. All of the Chinese know it and it is rapidly becoming what Beijing and Shanghai used to be. What I mean is, it seemed to be the most unsullied (#GoTReference) by the Western world. Beijing and Shanghai both seemed to be full of English speaking folk. and their people seem to really embrace the white way of life, which is so boom(!), those are the majors. I put together a list of some other factors that were considered.

  • We teach at a University and not a pre-school or primary school. I love the kids but ahh….yeah you get it
  • WUST provides a free furnished apartment with a new bed, new furniture, and a flat screen
  • WUST gives employees free Mandarin classes and Chinese culturral tours
  • Reimbursement of finances incurred in relationship to the job in Wuhan
  • They purchase our ticket home or to our next destination. -Not a reimbursement, they pay for a 1 way plane ticket after our contract ends
  • We work part-time, with excess time to be newly-weds and explore The East. Standard 3 day weekend and over 40 paid vacay-days
  • We can work with each other on the same campus (some schools didn’t allow this)
  • It is a major burgeoning city & a central hub for travel throughout China

WUST University allows us to teach college kids on a college campus, it is part time and it is sweet! Now that we are here let me give you the low-low. The apartment is free but it needs some work. Generally you get what you pay for but sweat equity does count….

  • Bathroom: a disaster area but we are greatful that it dosen’t have a squatty potty. It took a full day of deep cleaning to make it acceptable for us to stand naked in there. It still requires some detail work, but it is functional now. Let me tell you a lil shumthin about the shower though…. hahaaaaah, there isn’t one! There is a shower head coming out of the wall and a drain in the floor, thats it! Whatever though, when in China…
  • Bedroom: I love it. It is spacious with tall windows.  They supplied a new bed but the bed is hard aaMF. I mean falling into it the wrong way could be life threatening. Interestingly enough, we do sleep good on it.
  • Office: no complaints, it is a 2nd bedroom that is pretty big with 2 large wardrobes, a desk, a couple of  high-end routers and a Lenovo desktop computer….. not that I will ever use it -the block is hot baby. We are in China with big brothers, big brother yaknowhatimean! (more on that later). Everything seems like bait on a hook to me, but I am a black man from America……so it would.
  • Kitchen: Small but workable. -No oven, no microwave – I am currently trying to finesse those items.
  • Living room: is our spot. it’s where my wife and I chill the most. The sectional is not that comfy but it’s home so we are making it work.

There is a different standard of living here. A cleaning person cleaned our home but that mug was still filthy through our eyes. All of China that we have been exposed to so far has an interesting dynamic working. They build the new and the beautiful but they do not take care of it. Most things seem run down and used up. There doesen’t seem to be any continuous maintenance and their standard of living reflects that. I also have to remind myself that they are a developing country. They are not developed but are in the process of developing. Imagine living in America in the late 1800 or early 1900s this is about where their standard of living is in some parts of Wuhan. They haven’t risen high enough to look down their nose at anyone yet. The boom in China happened quickly and a lot of people were left behind.  . Live in the dosen’t seem to be a high standard of living. The more I learn about their governing /government philosophies the more I think I understand. I am gand of course there are different cultural norms. Like, there is no such thing as a dryer. It’s like we are living in an episode of Good Times. Everyone hangs their clothes out to dry, we are in this apartment building that looks sketchy af. But you know…we growin and whatnot lol.  The bottom line is, I have been too comfortable for too long and it is time to get out of my comfort zone and grow. I’m looking forward to experiencing it all with my wife and I am currently embracing  also, but it is a lot …..got-damit this is not the Chinese food I was expecting! I haven’t seen any egg-fo-young, not General Tso’s chicken….I will  likely be loosing a lot of weight in the coming months. I have been cooking my American styled dishes, but that has to stop too…..okay that will be another blog eating in the mainland….Peace for now and later.

Destinations

 

First disclaimer, the Chinese culture is not introverted! They have dance classes and workout groups among other things hosted outside on random street corners. The uber social and they stare like glare with no phuks given. -Its great!

We are black and I’m China. Yo! I said I am freckled faced, red haired dreadlock wearing black man and my woman is a toasted cinnamon dread wig wearing little sexy lady. Our neighborhood and shopping centers are getting used to seeing us but they still give us their full attention when when we come through or walk by. My favorite experiences so far has been with the kids though. They go ear to ear with their smiles and say hello or the just tug at mom and dad like wth is that!

There is so much to say. I won’t be able to fit it all here but suffice to say that we are in the middle if a new and ancient culture. The people are not the grinning and snickering type but they are cool AF. The people are freaking obsessed with all things “cute”. The food is not all that bit the people are.

We landed, we’re safe, and we are having the most extreem experience of our lives up to this point; living in Wuhan, China!

  • Outside of the university not too many people give a what about us being American.
  • Kids < 17 years old seem to speak English okay…
  • They invest in their children heavily and you see it everywhere
  • Cooking hygiene is not the best
  • Cashless and pedestrian society
  • The working class freaking works
  • Smog is a real health threat

 

For every pedal on a rose there is a thorn to deal with.