By Daniella Djiogan
1. Language: Being able to understand whatever everyone is saying is an amazing feeling, especially when it felt like you were deaf for almost a year. I was walking towards the airport checkpoint, and I saw a couple of French guys just kicking back and enjoying life..speaking in French obviously, making jokes…it felt AWESOME to understand. I literally was sitting there, starring and giggling like a fool…lol
2. People: I never knew I would be so glad to see similar looking people in my life. On my last day in Beijing, I saw two black men in their late 40s, and I suddenly felt elated…overjoyed. For some reason, they seemed like my uncles, my relatives. I don’t even know what language they were speaking, but I can swear I could understand what they were saying. Trust me, you miss the little things.
3. Kindness: I know it seems rather vague and as if I never received any kindness in China, and that’s not the case obviously. I have met so many lovely people in China…so generous, kind….(genuinely good people by nature). But it was always hard to approach someone to ask a question regarding directions or just about anything. You gather all your courage to ask someone a favor, only for them to walk pass you as if you were a ghost…in fact non-existent. That crushed me lots of time…self-esteem is something you gotta have as a foreigner. Anyways, it was nice coming home and having people help you with a smile…without hesitation…and without you begging them as if your life depended on it.
So, if you see a foreigner out there asking for something you can offer, please help them or at least don’t ignore them….it hurts..sob* sob*
4. Being able to read everything: I know that goes with language, but it’s amazing picking up a newspaper and realizing it’s in English…it’s readable. I don’t normally read at all, but I literally picked up a newspaper and read and read and read about economics, politics, …everything. How you miss things..things you never even did before.
5. Food: The ULTIMATE..Food should be number one on the list of things you miss. During my plane ride, I was literally salivating about home cooked food. My mouth was watering at the thought of eating my mom’s cooking…Yum Yummm!!!
6. Unnoticed: Walking without being noticed…that’s pretty self explanatory…Here, I blend in like a banana in a fruit smoothie….I know that’s not the best analogy but I love it!