So, if you’ve been following this blog, then you’ll have noticed that I haven’t written in a while.
“Oh, I’m soooo lazy!” I said to my roommate, Katie. “I have NOT been productive.” I’m preparing to study for a third year because of my scholarship, whereas my Chinese classmates are sending me GIFs of them banging their heads against walls as they write their thesis papers. Me? I’m still fluffing my resources (which, to be fair, are in Chinese so a lot harder for me to understand).
“Um, you’ve been doing a lot,” Katie said in response.
Well, I GUESS I’ve been up to some things…I went to the Shanghai International Literary Festival last month (and came away with a veritable SACK of English books), I gave a talk at a coffee shop about my travel experiences (in Chinese!), I set up a bilingual China Travel Blog (feel free to check it out here! Still in the works…), did some poetry slams, got some poems published in a Shanghai local poet zine, and of course kept hammering away at Chinese and deciphering Chinese ghost stories (not because it’s my thesis topic, oh no, I just think they’re interesting!)
‘But what about your thesis?’ you might be wondering.
Well, for good reason.
As you might have noticed, none of the things I worked on are called “Thesis.” As I said, I have a year longer than my classmates, but still. Better put it to good use! So, now I get to join in the thunk of scholars banging their heads against books and other hard surfaces in the campus library.
And you know what? Maybe it’s nostalgia for having returned to where I lived for 2 semesters, but there’s something satisfying about sitting in a hard seat with a book to scrutinize. I plan to hit the road, and to hit it hard in due time, but for now there’s something to be said about centering myself in my role as scholar. To poke my book in that quiet library for several hours while sipping peach juice, and to feel like I’ve really learned something, despite all of the head-thunking.