One of my earliest memories is crying in a Chinese restaurant near Times Square as my father was trying to explain to me the "poo poo platter" was edible. It was the night I learned to use chop sticks from him - I still use them the same way, its not correct but its how he taught me.
I'm overwhelmed with excitement at the fact that I will get to be part of a university campus and spend time with Chinese law students. The amount of history I have been trying to absorb to appreciate their legal system only makes the whole thing feel more amazing. I do not understand, I am going to understand more.
I am on a guided trip with other invited students. We will be stopping at many major tourist attractions and staying in Government hotels. Its not what I want, that's not how I travel. I'm used to sitting on a curb watching hordes of tourists being ushered through practical set scenes. After they pass life goes back to normal and I get up and walk around surviving on the graciousness of locals with patience. I hate that I am in a tour group. Which is why I know this is just my first trip, not my last.
But on that note I am scared that my wandering might be on hold for a while. I worked very hard to get two thirds of the way through law school. Since starting at Albany Law I have run two marathons, travelled through a dozen countries and filled my head with about a ten foot shelf of books. Unfortunately, as good of a life as that is, my pace is catching up with me and I think the only adventure awaiting me after China is a desk in an office... something I've never been quite great at.
If the law degree doesn't pan out I think I could handle a year surfing in Cape Town or an L.L.M. in Beijing - maybe get a grip on Mandarin.
I'm going East.