Looking at how 'frequently' I publish a new blog post, one could think that I don't actually know anything about successfully maintaining a blog.
I joined the gym a good few months ago and working out has quickly become a favourite pastime of mine, including the gruelling classes with my personal trainer. I never wrote about that... I started that blog post but to this day it's unfinished.
I moved to a lovely new apartment at the end of July / beginning of August and never wrote anything about it here on my blog, even though I'd planned to.
I went fishing for the first time in my life in the middle of August and I intended to write about that but again I never did.
I spent five wonderful days in Hainan at the beginning of September and one of those days was spend at the beach with golden sand, miles and miles of it, inviting you to just take a stroll and forget all about the world and everything else for a while. The were palm trees, warm water and it wasn't crowded (unusual for China) at all. I never wrote about that either.
I'd planned a follow-up post on my Branded: Notes On A Mark That'll Last Forever post but I never wrote that either, then there was a post about friendship I wanted to write and some thoughts about dating in China. I'd also planned to find the time to write something more about food. I do love Chinese food and my Chinese friends and students are regularly stunned by the fact that I don't seem to know any good Western restaurants in Wuhan, even though there are some, even a widely famed German restaurant, one I've shockingly never been to. I'm the worst possible person to ask about where foreigners in Wuhan hang out. I don't know any bars or other hangouts. I've never bothered to ask anyone or do some research. I'm not not interested. I love Chinese food and I don't want to eat any Western food.
|梦幻水城（mènghuàn shuǐchéng）Dream Watertown|
What with all the writing I'd 'planned' to do but never pursued it's only fair that you wonder if I've been doing any writing at all. The answer would be a resounding yes followed by no less than three exclamation marks.
I've actually written a whole book (see picture above) and I just started on my second. All that writing will however not be published, it's for my eyes only. It's my therapy, to make me feel better, to keep me from thinking too much. I don't read back over what I've written, but it still feels like writing it all down makes it easier to keep my thoughts, which have been exceedingly messy lately, in some sort of order.
It's strange really, I never believed in keeping a diary. I tried it a few times as a teenager but I always gave up. Especially when, during my second stay in the slimming clinic, my general practitioner sent me to, one of my "friends" decided it was okay to read my diary. To top it all off she shared, what she'd read, with the entire ward. I ended up being a laughing stock and being a rather sensitive young girl I didn't cope well with the teasing and left for home shortly after. My doctor, being good friends with the director of the clinic, submitted a formal complaint on my behalf and the girl apparently got expelled from the clinic.
Over the years I tried keeping a diary but always gave up, afraid someone would take the book and read it. My dad gave me a beautiful book with a lock but I never wrote a single word in it. Sadly I've no idea where the book's vanished to, which is a pity since I think my dad spent quite a bit of money on it.
With recent events (previous post), forgive me for not dragging it all up again, I've given keeping a diary another try and so far it's working really well. I'm actually enjoying myself a lot.
|A fitting name: 念与不念（niàn yǔ bù niàn）To Miss & Not To Miss|
Like I said, I'm on my second book, and while I've only started filling it with my thoughts and ideas, I'm confident that it will be full in no time, ready to be put aside in favour of another empty book waiting to be filled with word after word.
All this writing is a good distraction, while it makes me think it also keeps my thoughts, which would otherwise be completely and entirely messed up, a little bit ordered. I can write down whatever I want and this time I'm not afraid that someone might decide to have a look inside my private thoughts. If they do they won't like what they're reading and if they decide to go gossiping all hell will break lose, I'll see to that.
Lately I really enjoy doing things that require silence and calm. I'm listening to some Chinese folk songs, my friend introduced to me, songs I wouldn't ordinarily listen to, but because they make me feel calm and relaxed, I just do. I write, I read and I try to go walking. These past few days I've been cooking for myself, trying to improve my skills somewhat. I'm enjoying the quiet of which there is actually plenty to be found in noisy China. My apartment is right near the intersection of two large main roads but it's astonishingly quiet during the night, I would even argue that it's quieter than my old apartment.
I've taken a good look at my friends and weeded out some bad eggs, for there unfortunately were some that needed to go. Some people who couldn't or wouldn't understand that people sometimes go through a period of time where you simply don't want to talk to anyone and can't stand to have more than one or two people around you. Sometimes you just feel like that if people want to share their own problems with you, you just want to shut off both ears, pretending to be deaf. I rarely do this, but I needed to do this these past few weeks and that's why I decided that those who didn't understand had to go.
Dr Z has been a rock throughout this time. I'm truly grateful that I met him when I burned my thigh so badly and needed his help and his fantastic surgical skills to fix me up. He was more than amazing back then and this time it was no different. He made sure that I got the best care and showed me that a real friend, will, no matter how busy they are, find the time to come to see you when you really need them to. He took my mind of things, used gentle force to distract me, let me cry in his car and his arms when I couldn't do anything but that, made sure I ate some healthy food and just generally made sure that I know where to turn to when it all gets a little too much. There was a while where, after what happened between me and my fish, believed that I could never trust anyone ever again to keep their word, but this fantastic friend has made it very clear that he doesn't make promises he can't keep. While I'm praising him so highly, he's also a brilliant conversationalist. There's nothing I can't talk to him about it and it's rather funny how we switch from Chinese to English and back to Chinese and English again.
Another friend also went out of her way to spent time with me and still does so. I'm fortunate to have those two people in my life, they've become such good friends and I don't want to ever lose them.
qiānzhù nǐde shǒuxiāng bié zài huánghèlóu
I'm no longer holding your hand underneath the Yellow Crane Tower
bōtāo wànlǐ chángjiāng shuǐ sòng nǐ xià yángzhōu
The great waves of the Yangtze River sent you to Yangzhou
I'd like to finish with two lines from a song I discovered today, the title of the song is 烟花三月 (Fireworks In March) by 龚玥 (Gong Yue). I like those two lines because if I've translated them right, from the context of the song (gosh, that was a pain) then it talks about change and even though change is sometimes unwanted it inevitably will make us stronger in some way or other. Sometimes it just takes some time before we realise that.