so this is goobye…

Posted by anya on September 15th, 2007 filed in Uncategorized

Prepare yourselves… this blog needs an overdue update revolving around all the adventures I’ve been having since I’ve written last. But first… a little entry as a tribute to one amazing, incredible place:
On August 31st I was on a train from Beijing to Weifang, saying goodbye to a city to which words do no justice. I cannot expain what it is exactly about Beijing that made it so unforgettable. It is probably a mixture of the time and my state of mind and the vibe and something in the air (mm, pollution) and chuan’r spice. Whoever is messing with this concoction right now really knows how to mix the ingredients! The city is like this giant ball of excitement which can’t help but sweep you along with its energy and passion and, well, life. I keep thinking that four months is not nearly enough to even get a taste of this place and the things it has to offer. I only wish that I could somehow convey a tiny part of what this city represents and what it feels like. A while ago, I remember thinking about what makes a city singable-about. You know, there are certain cities that just appear in song more often than others? New York, San Francisco, Paris, St. Petersburg (in Russian rock music), often come to mind… So yes, they are major world capitals with huge populations and numerous attractions… but I wonder whether there is any intangible, sticky “it” which makes them inherently more attractive to musicians and songwriters? What makes you fall in love with a *place* enough that you can feel its heartbeat in your veins and its breath on the back of your neck? I hope everyone, in life, is lucky enough to find a place that they feel the same way about, and that keeps them guessing, even if they know it like the back of their hand. I remember listening to an interview with some Russian rock singer a while back, and one phrase sticks out to me out of everything she said. “Piter, eto takoy gorod… esli ti ne sdelaesh ego, on sdelat tebya,” which translates into something like “St. Petersburg is like that… if you don’t ‘do’ it, it will ‘do’ you.” Without the slightest bit of arrogance, I feel like I can say that I ‘did’ Beijing. And it was wonderful. Leaving is never easy, but this time it was especially depressing. I hope to come back.
soundtrack: katie melua “9 million bicycles in beijing”

One Response to “so this is goobye…”

  1. Rodrigo Says:

    Dear Columbia Alumni Association of Beijing, I will be participating in Columbia’s Summer Language Program at Minzu University strtiang June 15th until August 18th, and I am interested in connecting with your alumni club during my stay. If you could sign me up so that I can be notified of your events that would be much appreciated. I am studying Sustainable Development and am especially interested in any events that are related to sustainability and/or economic development in China that you are sponsoring, so please let me know if you have these kinds of events planned for the summer or if there are alumni in these fields that I could connect with. Sincerely, Natalie Paret

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