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A renewed me: my renewed sense of China

Chinese New Year invites us to cherish the year passing as we usher the new. Such mood of the occasion fits my personal experience of Chinese culture. I remember the people I’ve met and reminisce the experiences I’ve had as I said goodbye to my old biases and began embracing those new. It is on this note that I want to start sharing my story.

I have to admit that I used to be one of those people who have uneasy thoughts of China. Before, I was stereotypical, as others did, about Chinese arts, food, language, and people. Until the year 2010 came in my life. It was during this year when I was sent to Shanghai, under a scholarship grant, to learn Chinese culture, language, and society. Stereotypical as I was, I felt uncertain of things to unfold when I came to China. My journey started on February 25 of that year. I didn’t know that such date would be pivotal and would begin unravelling many changes in my life vis-a-vis my sense of China... . Renewed Sense of Sight

When I arrived in China, I brought with me the mindset that there’s nothing new about Chinese arts. For instance, in architecture, I expected to see dragon features on traditional buildings, pagodas, and the usual Chinese-style roofs which I had seen in books (many of which written by Western authors) when I was in high school. But then, I was proven wrong. Indeed, I was overwhelmed by the Pearl Tower and the 88-storey Jinmao Tower prominently dominating Shanghai’s skyline!

In the Yuyuan Garden, I was astonished that modern commerce and ancient history can converge.

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