Tuesday, 13 November 2012

here and there #2 [shock culture]

My dear dreamers,

Chongqing (重庆) via hudong

It's been a while since my last post. I wasn't counting to be away for so long. But I had an unexpected and warming visit from A., my Chinese friend which is currently studying at Portugal.

So, today, I'll talk about culture. Because her visit made me think about my life and my feelings towards others. Receiving a brand new culture in your home is not as easy as it seems. Because it's your home, your lifestyle and everything changes within a second. You start being questioned and you ask questions yourself. About you and about them. It's good.

It was a shock but it also was a turning point in my life. I never thought that receiving a friend at my home would have such an effect in me. I became more aware. Of what? I don't know, I still feel a bit confusing.

It's different when you travel. You go there, it's just yourself and an experience. You may change a bit, but your inner core is still there. You only see what you want, you only make the questions you want. You'll be fascinated by some things, feel awkward about others. But when you come back home everything is the same. You don't have to cope with that culture anymore. You go back to your old life.

Penpalling were one of the ways I found to know other cultures without leaving my room. I could travel by spending less of one euro each time until I could really put my feet out there. Now, I discovered a new way: receiving my penpals at my home, let them find their way into (the deepest of) my heart and change my world in just a couple of days.

I wanted to say much, much more. But I can't find the words. I'm still all emotion and I need to think about the last week more profoundly. I just want to thank A. for bringing her home to mine. 

Tell me your stories. Has a friend turned your world upside down too?


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