Chinese Women, Asian Women, Online Dating & Things Chinese and Asian
Beautiful
Chinese
Women
of
CLM
Beautiful
Asian
Women
of
ALM
Barry from Australia is a questioning soul who looks at social issues from an alternative point of view and instead of asking, “Why?”, he asks “Why not?” He’s convinced that many of his previous incarnations were spent in China. He feels drawn to the people there; attracted by their rich culture and way of life. If given one wish from God, he’d reply, “I want everyone on Earth to be the same colour, speak the same language, and treat each other as they themselves would like to be treated.”
Articles :
92
Views :
497703
Comments :
3439
Create Time :
2013-10-20
This Blog's Articles
Index of Blogs
Index Blog Articles

My China Trip - Day 21, Part 8 我的中国之行,第21天,第8部分    

By Barry Pittman
5758 Views | 32 Comments | 1/8/2015 1:13:59 PM

It was late in the day.  Tina and I had struggled to do the three hour hike home in the dark, after visiting a half completed monastery in the far distant hills around her home town of Shawan.



As I walked, my mind had wandered through the myriad of experiences this and my other trips to China had taught me.  One characteristic I’d continually noticed was how happy or satisfied workers here seemed to be with their lives. Of course, there are exceptions to every rule - I'm talking about on average.  Most folks often were enthusiastically chatting or smiling to each other as they worked or went about their day to day lives, no matter who they were, how much they had or what they were doing.



But I must make something clear.  I’m referring here to normal people in China.  The middle class.  What I am NOT referring to was the strata below this, the bottom dwellers encompassing the genuinely destitute.  The homeless vagabonds, drifters, cripples and beggars.  These people of course were not happy, nor could they ever be, as government pensions and social support services sadly here were quite limited in scope and availability.



This heart breaking, rock bottom level of impoverished people in my experience were far more evident in the big cities, rather than the rural areas where I now resided with Tina.  In the large urban areas, they could more easily melt into and become lost amongst the dirt, dust and debris of everyday life.   Looked at every day by bustling strangers on their way to and from work yet without really being seen at all.  Or if they were by accident or misfortune momentarily noticed by a middle or upper class person, they were mostly condemned as just another piece of human detritus or appalling misery who was best stepped around and avoided.



Life in China was an amazing yet contradictory potpourri indeed, an enormous melting pot of the good, the bad and the ugly. Life here was a colourful dream for the rich, a fitful slumber for the middle, an appalling tragedy for the very poor.



I had no time to continue these rather disturbing inner reflections however, as finally Tina and I at last reached her apartment.  We were both knackered.  Exhausted. My God, this had been a long and rather weird day.  It had taken eight articles (Day 21, parts 1 to 8) to finally reach this point.  Hallelujah, it was nearly finished!



It was 9.20pm. Tina’s sixteen year old daughter Wendy was at her desk studying, having just returned home from school.  Yes, students here went to school for a few hours every Sunday evening.  This was on top of eight hours schooling on the Saturday.  And twelve hours per day attendance Monday through to Friday. So school was a seven day per week affair.



When I queried Wendy why kids needed to go to class even on a Sunday, she replied that the teachers considered it helped continue the study momentum.  That is, by forcing students to attend school on the Sunday evening, they theoretically became mentally focused and prepared for a whole new week of learning on the Monday.  The hard-nosed powers that be didn’t want to risk the children becoming lazy by having a whole day off without thinking about their education!



Students in Western countries just don’t know how easy their lives were compared to  China.  Competition for university places here was fierce and huge pressures were placed on many children by their families to succeed well. 



It was interesting also to note that which particular university a student attended had a big bearing on their job prospects.  Graduates from the more highly regarded, prestigious Chinese universities were much more likely to be offered a good job than their peers who had gained a degree from a second tier institution.  So whilst the fact that a student attended a university was important, exactly which university had been attended was crucial also.  This was assuming that the parents weren’t rich enough to send their child overseas to attend a Western university.  This was what Tina was planning to do with Wendy.  She’d recently sold an investment apartment that she’d owned in Chengdu, in early preparation for this.  Sending Wendy overseas would take a lot of money, a sacrifice many caring Chinese parents did for their children.



The nearest university to Shawan where Tina lived was in Leshan, a smallish town about twenty minutes bus ride from here and about an hour or so away from Chengdu.  Tina had told me in no uncertain manner, that when Wendy was ready to attend university, there was no way that she’d let her study at Leshan.



“Why not?” I asked.



“Because it is not a high quality place.  They accept students there who are not able to qualify for better universities.  Every Chinese parent knows which are the good universities to go to and which are the not so good.”



This was a real shame, as Leshan was close to Tina’s home.  It would’ve been quite convenient for Wendy to study there.   She only had another eighteen months of high school left, so choice of which university to attend would soon enough become an important issue for her.



In the three weeks that I’d been here, I’d not seen Wendy go out to relax with friends or sit down for even half an hour to watch TV.  She also was not allowed to surf the internet.  Never.  She was constantly studying, like literally millions of her hapless peers felt compelled to do all over the country.



After briefly chatting to Wendy, exchanging a few pleasantries and ensuring she’d eaten, Tina and I then had a quick shower without bothering to eat anything ourselves. My stomach that had been rumbling so loudly a few hours ago had given up its vociferous protests, succumbing to quiet acceptance that food wouldn't be forthcoming for a good while yet.



Both of us felt exhausted as we collapsed onto the bed, yet not quite so tired as prevent anything else from happening.



“Would you like to make love, Barry? Tina asked.



“Does a dog have fleas?  Is the Pope Catholic?” I replied humorously.



What do you mean, Barry?”  Tina had no idea at all what my Western style humour had meant.



“I mean yes, Tina.  I would love to make love with you”.



At this, Tina gave one of her sweet little smiles.  She was such a dear and gentle soul. Our lips touched, our arms caressed and our bodies soon morphed together seamlessly as one, as ever man and woman were meant to be.  We each felt triumphant, exultant and absolutely united in the strength of our love, brimming with appreciation, gratitude and joy that after so many years of fruitless searching, we’d finally found each other.   Chinese online dating certainly had its rich rewards if one was patient - or lucky  -  enough.



But yet…   but yet…. life isn’t always like the movies, where romantic tales invariably had happy endings.  In the dark recesses of my mind, a subconscious alarm was going off.  A strong sense of déjà vu was involuntarily felt; I was sure I’d been in a similar situation when younger with another person, that ultimately had led to massive heartbreak and heartache.  Specific details eluded me at this very moment, but vaguely disturbing apprehensions were beginning to awaken from a deep slumber within me.



My God, why am I constantly assaulted by these negative thoughts!”  I cried inwardly to myself.  For the first half of this trip, I’d been plagued by imaginary trumpeting elephants in the room on many nights.  And now the elephants had been replaced by feelings of gloomy déjà vu! 



It seemed every time that Tina and I drew close, the joyful bubble of love surrounding us suddenly seemed ready to imminently burst in dramatic style, like a highly pressurised rubber balloon being mischievously pricked by a child with a pin.



Did every Western man who fell for a Chinese lady undergo the same doubts that I regularly experienced?  Or was I just plain confused? A nutcase in search of a metaphorical nutcracker, to crack open and finally free the swirling clouds of hesitancy and ambivalence within me.



I innately knew that despite all the experiences and the intimacy we’d shared up till now, the emotional glue between Tina and I had not yet fully set.  The concrete holding us together was still a little moist.  Anything could still happen.



This moving tale of love was unfortunately far from being finished.  The distant howls sounding silently in my mind from the disquieting hounds of misfortune and trouble baying dolefully in the distance were up to no good.  They seemed impossible to get away from or defeat. I bowed my head in discouragement, sensing a long awaited disturbance and danger that lay restively inevitably ahead.



And lay ahead, it most certainly did.



To be continued – Day 22, Part 1



此时夜深了。这一天,参观了位于她的家乡沙湾偏远的山岗上半建成的寺院后,蒂娜和我抹黑挣扎三个小时徒步返回。



前行中,我的思绪又飘到本次及其他中国之旅中的所见所闻。我不断注意到的一个特点是,工人似乎对他们的生活感到幸福和满意。当然,凡事都有例外 - 我说的是一般情况。大多数人不论他们什么身份,拥有多少或在做什么,处理工作或是日常琐事,往往都会热情交谈或面带微笑。这不同于西方许多区域,除非你拥有一个巨大的宽屏幕电视,最新型号的汽车或装饰漂亮的房子或公寓,否则不会满意的。

似乎在西方贪婪没有什么不好,几乎理所当然。拥有越多,需求越多。难道他们没有意识到,欲望就是一个陷阱,一个可恶的无底洞,永远也填不满吗?让人的心灵和精神感到真正满足宽慰的只能是积极性和爱,而不是多余不必要的贪欲和财产。寿衣没有口袋。精神不携带手袋。

有助于解释许多显然不太富裕的中国人对自己的境况满意的一条线索是,幸福往往与环境的和谐与否有关。在许多农村地区,中国的农民完全投身于农活,完全依靠种地维持生计,和西方相比尤其如此。他们根本不觉得需要上网,或需要在等离子大屏幕上看奥普拉或开豪车去兜风。这些物质财富仅是幸福的装饰,与真正的幸福感受截然不同。



但我必须澄清,我这里指的是普通百姓中产阶层,不是指低于这个阶层深陷贫困的底层居民,无家可归的流浪者,漂泊者,残疾人和乞丐。当然,这些人都不幸福,也不可能幸福,因为政府养老金和社会救助服务的广度和可用资源严重不足。

经验告诉我,与我和蒂娜现居住的农村地区相比,底层阶层这类让人痛心的现象在大城市尤为明显,他们会更容易地融入并淹没在日常污垢,灰尘和碎屑中,被每天熙熙攘攘上下班经过的陌生人熟视无睹。或者,如果因偶然或不幸被一个中产或上层阶层的人发现,他们大多是被谴责为另一块人类渣渣或觉吓人而避之唯恐不及。

啊,中国的生活百态的确是令人惊异的集锦,好的,坏的,丑的,一个无所不包的巨大熔炉。我为自己所拥有的感到庆幸,为贫乏、一无所有的人觉得可怜。对富人而言,这里的生活是丰富多彩的梦,对中产阶层而言,是断断续续的睡眠,对非常穷苦的人就是令人震惊的悲剧。

我没有时间继续这令人不安的思考,这会蒂娜和我终于抵达她的公寓。我们俩精疲力尽,疲惫不堪。我的天啊,这真是一个漫长而相当怪异的一天。花了八篇文章(第21日, 第1〜8部分)才写到这。哈利路亚!

蒂娜十六岁的女儿温迪正在伏案学习,刚刚放学回家。是的,这里的学生每个星期天晚上都去学校学习几个小时,星期六最多八小时,周一至周五12小时,也就是每个星期七天课。



当我问温迪为什么需要周日去学校,她回答说教师们认为这有助于保持学习动力。也就是说,通过强制学生周日晚上到校学习,理论上会有利于精神集中,为新的一周学习任务做准备。强硬权力不想冒险让孩子们一整天不动脑筋而变得懒散!

与中国学生相比,西方国家的学生根本不知道他们的生活是多么轻松啊。上大学的竞争在中国是如此激烈,许多孩子因望子成龙的家长而背负巨大的压力。另一引人注意的趣事是,能否就读一些特定的大学会影响他们的就业前景。假设父母不具富裕能力送孩子到海外留学,从中国久负盛名的名牌大学毕业的学生比从二线院校获得学位的同龄人,更可能获得一个良好的工作机会。

举个例子,距离蒂娜现居住的沙湾最近的大学位于一个小镇乐山,约二十分钟的大巴车程,距成都一个小时左右。然而,蒂娜曾明确地告诉我,要是温迪上大学,她不会让她去乐山读。



“为什么不?”我问。



“因为它不是一个好学校,他们录取的学生都是考取不上更好的大学才来的。每一个中国父母都知道哪些大学好哪些不好。”



这真遗憾,因为乐山离蒂娜家近,温迪去那上学会很方便。她只有18个月就要高中毕业了,所以选择要上哪所大学会很快成为她的重要抉择。



在这的三个星期里,我从没见到温迪与朋友一起外出放松,或坐下来看半个小时电视。她还不许上网。从来没有。她要不断地学习,就像全国各地数以百万计不幸的同龄人一样。

这天晚上,和温迪简短寒暄闲聊几句确认她吃过晚饭后,蒂娜和我快速冲了个澡,我们根本没想着要吃东西。几个小时前咕噜咕噜直叫的肚子,现在已经放弃了叫喊抗议,安静接受食物一时半会不会到来的事实。



我们两人倒在床上都感到筋疲力尽,但这么累没有防止别的事情发生。

“你想做爱吗,巴里?”蒂娜问。

“难道狗有跳蚤?教皇是天主教徒?”我幽默地回答。

“你是什么意思,巴里?”蒂娜根本听不懂我这西式幽默的话。

“我是说愿意,蒂娜。我很想和你做。”。



听到这蒂娜甜美一笑,她是这样可爱温柔的人儿。我们嘴唇相触,双臂轻抚,我们的身体很快就像男女之间该做的那样融为一体。经过这么多年无果的寻觅,我们终于找到彼此,爱的力量把我们紧密的联系在一起,我们喜不自禁,满怀感恩。中国线上约会当然有其丰厚的回报,如果有耐心 - 或者足够幸运的话。



可是...可是...生活并不总是像电影一样,浪漫故事总是有大团圆的结局。在我的心灵深处,潜意识的警铃之前关闭了。似曾相识的强烈感觉侵袭着我。回首往昔,同样有佳人为伴,最后也只落得刻骨铭心的痛,尽管此刻具体细节已然遗忘,但隐约不安的担忧开始将我从沉睡中唤醒。



“我的上帝,为什么我一直被这些消极的想法袭击!”我内心呼喊着。此行的前半部分时间,很多夜晚我一直被吹号角的大象影像折磨着,现在取得代之折磨着我的是那阴沉的似曾相识的感觉!

每一次当我更靠近蒂娜时,围绕着我们的爱的欢乐泡泡似乎就要戏剧性的爆破了,就像一个被灌足气的橡皮气球遭一个孩子用别针淘气的扎着一样。



是否每一个爱上中国女士的西方男人也会心存相似的疑惑?或是我纯属困惑?一个疯子在寻找一个隐喻性的胡桃钳,终于撬开放飞心中的犹豫矛盾旋涡。



我心理明白,不论如何,蒂娜和我之间的情感纽带尚未完全建牢,维系我们关系的混凝土尚未凝固。什么都有可能发生。爱的故事远未结束。在我安静的内心里隐约听到令人不安的猎犬的哀嚎,有种不祥之兆。我感觉到前方面临着困扰和危险。

而前方,很可能的确如此


Copyright owned jointly by Author and CyberCupid Co., Ltd. Breach of copyright will be prosecuted.
Comments
(Showing 1 to 10 of 32) 1 2 3 4 More...
#2015-02-07 15:11:29 by JohnAbbot @JohnAbbot

Nice work Barry, first you lull us into a false sense of security, telling us about the great lovemaking that occurs between yourself and Tina, and then as we bask in the feeling that all is well in Barry and Tina's world, you bring down the hammer of doubt. Great job of building the tension. :S

Oh well, I guess tomorrow is another day. Day 22 to be exact. You've got me wondering if it's going to be a day we'd rather not experience with you, perhaps a day in love match Hell. I sincerely hope not.

#2015-02-08 00:17:00 by melcyan @melcyan

“feelings of gloomy déjà vu!”

Doesn't sound good.

I have heard similar words about a relationship many times from other men. Barry, I don't know where your story is heading but a conversation I had yesterday has prompted me to make a general comment on starting a new relationship.

To give a new relationship the best chance of success a man should not start it before the wounds of previous relationships have healed. A man also need to understand the role that he played in the failure of previous relationship(s).  

What prompted me to say this? Men generally don't talk honestly with anyone about their relationship failures – especially themselves.

I had a haircut yesterday. The same man has cut my hair since 1994. It sounds bizarre but after my partner (and counselors) he is the person I have been most honest with about my life. We have both shared our personal history with each other for more than twenty years.

Yesterday we reached agreement on an interesting point. The man who accepts more than his share of blame for the failure of his previous relationship(s) puts himself in a powerful position. He now has the power to improve. He can change his behavior in order to choose a partner with more care and develop his relationship skills to create a much better relationship.

The man who blames others for the problems of his past has very little power to make a better life for himself.

#2015-02-08 02:00:01 by anonymous12917 @anonymous12917

Barry I tend to agree with John's reply in general. One thing I want to say for myself as well, you are not crazy feeling the negative thoughts, the doubting. Remember this: you are 60 years old, single, divorced and have survived bad relationships in the past with a Chinese women. You are also cautious which is smart behaviour, it is okay to protect yourself emotionally, Imi didn't protect his heart, his emotions and he got his ass handed to him.

I will finish by saying it is ok to protect yourself but if you feel Tina is the one then let your heart open to her and let her in forever cast aside the doubting Thomas feelings as we are not getting any younger and each day that goes by is a day we can never get back again.

day 22 front and centre..

Cheers mate....

#2015-02-08 08:29:20 by Barry1 @Barry1

@JohnAbbot

"Great job of building the tension"

Thanks for this, John.

I could actually tell you what eventually happens between Tina and I, but then I'd have to kill you.

Your call. :D

#2015-02-08 09:12:38 by paulfox1 @paulfox1

Barry
you made LOVE?
But..but..but...you're not MARRIED!(rofl)

#2015-02-08 14:26:00 by JohnAbbot @JohnAbbot

@Barry1 - What to do? What to do? Given the rather limited and somewhat dramatic options you've offered me, and after a great deal of thought considering those two choices, I have chosen to live. I hereby release you from telling me "what eventually happens between Tina and (yourself)" until such time as you are good and ready to do so.

However, be warned, that when I reach Day 22, Part 141, I will likely opt to kill myself. (doh)

And also consider that well before then LadyMonika may already have gleefully put both of us (you and me) out of our misery. (rofl)

#2015-02-08 15:44:54 by Barry1 @Barry1

@paulfox1

"you made LOVE? But..but..but...you're not MARRIED"

Very amusing, Paul.

I have a feeling that it's mainly men who read my articles, so I'm sure everything will be okay in this regard.

I'm sure also that those Chinese ladies who DO read this blog will be in full agreement with my actions, being the broad minded, lovely and intelligent souls that they no doubt are. None of us are getting younger, so we indeed need to make the most of what we have, right now. (y)

#2015-02-08 23:44:57 by Barry1 @Barry1

@melcyan

"To give a new relationship the best chance of success a man should not start it before the wounds of previous relationships have healed."

Thanks for your wise words, Melcyan.

In relation to the above statement in particular, let me say that sometimes it may take half a lifetime to fully seal the wounds from a previous relationship. or if one is lucky, maybe only five or ten years. What I'm driving at here is that the process may take a very long time - or maybe not at all. Maybe the wounds will remain open until one dies?

I suspect this is the problem in my case. Though I'm working hard to resolve it. I believe looking back with regret is wasted energy. Far better to concentrate on the present with an eye to the future.

Thanks also for sharing your anecdote about your barber. What a wonderful story. You both sound like smart people. More power to you, mate. (y)

#2015-02-08 23:55:13 by Barry1 @Barry1

@anonymous12917

"you are not crazy feeling the negative thoughts, the doubting."

Thanks heaps for the good advice, Anon12917.

I must agree that as I've become older, I'm more hesitant than before. More cautious. Just as you said, with age comes experience, which means no longer acting like a rash, hormonally charged teenager. Been there and done that.

In fact, a good friend of mine in his fifties is going through all of this process right now, proclaiming undying love to a lady. But things aren't going smoothly. I really do hope he doesn't end up like @Imi5922 with his sorry ass being handed back to him on a dinner plate (as you so colourfully described).

I sincerely do appreciate the words of advice that both you and Melcyan have given to me. The story is still unravelling in its own organic way. Anything still could - and most probably will - happen. (sweat)

#2015-02-09 00:01:03 by Barry1 @Barry1

@JohnAbbot

"when I reach Day 22, Part 141, I will likely opt to kill myself.....well before then LadyMonika may already have gleefully put both of us (you and me) out of our misery"

Very funny stuff, John. You really should be a comedian, not a website manager! (rofl)

It gives me pause however to once again thank @LadyMonika for her excellent translation work. It's a thankless task and I really do hope the good Chinese ladies reading her translation appreciate the mighty effort that she puts in. (clap)

Comments
(Showing 1 to 10 of 32) 1 2 3 4 More...
Comment
To respond to another member's comment type @ followed by their name before your comment, like this: @username Then leave a space. Ask Barry Pittman a Question : Click here...