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Blog Entry #14 – “FAREWELLS!”

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And all of the sudden, I wish I could turn back time– or at least pause it.

I still remember how I felt at the start of my senior year. Of course, I was excited to be a senior, but I was even more excited to be finished with high school. I remember telling my parents how lazy I was having to wake up so early and go to all the same, old, boring classes at school. I remember telling them how I wished I could just drop out and take GED like my sister. There were so many things I hated about being a high schooler, and I just couldn’t wait to get out of school. I thought I had a long way to go. I thought one year was more than enough time. But before I even notice, all that I have been wishing and waiting for are already there for me.

In less than 15 days, I’ll be graduated from ICS. After that day, I might not even see some of my friends or teachers again. My friends and the people that I have made memories with will all be in many different parts of the world. We all will have to face many new challenges, gain new experiences, and meet new people. And as a person who’s afraid of changes, I can tell you that this fact is really hard for me to accept. I really enjoy life as it is right now, and just by thinking that this has to change still terrifies me.

But it’s here. The time that I’ve always been waiting for has finally come, but it’s weird how I’m not so excited about it anymore. Although I know that there will be something good waiting ahead of me, I know that there are many more that I will have to let go as well. I can’t lie that I don’t feel anything about leaving because I do. I have a lot of mixed feelings, which I’m sure some of my friends do as well. Although it has been just 6 years, I’ve made so many memories here at ICS that I don’t think I will ever forget. All the trips that we have gone with each other, all the activities that we’ve planned or done with together–these are what creates such a strong bond in our class. Of course, it’s really sad to leave. But even if our journey at ICS has ended, this also marks the beginning of our new journey. So as Seniors Class of 2018, we should leave each other with smiles ,and maybe just a little bit of tears, so that we can start thinking about each other and wait for the time when fate will bring us all back together again.

 

 

Blog Entry #13 – “Damage and Healing” –

I think is the most significant external conflict in Cry, Beloved Country is the fact that things in Africa are overworked. The land is dry, and the soil lack nutrients, so nothing can grow there. Like the land, black people and the natives are also overworked. Because the whites have so much power over them, they are forced to do back-breaking work without getting enough pay. These things that happen cause further problem like people leaving the land, and so in the end, the country is left damaged.

I believe that Paton’s answer to this problem is equality. Towards the end of the book, you will see how things begin to start getting better just because the whites decide to come and help. This shows that Paton thinks that if we all help each other out and stop discriminating those who are different from us, all the external conflicts will eventually be solved.

In Cry, beloved Country, the most significant internal conflict seems to be whether you should do what others view as right or what you yourself think is right. In the story, Stephen Kumalo has to face this conflict a lot. For example, when his son is being treated unfairly, everyone seems to expect him to fight for his son. Stephen, however, chooses to stay calm and accept whatever happens because he doesn’t want to make matters worse. And because of this, I think Paton’s solution to this internal conflict is for us to do whatever we think is the most right, which I strongly agree.

Blog Entry #12 – “Othering” –

I think the concept of “othering” occurs when we are around people who are similar to us. Like what Dr. Zuleyka Zevallos has said, we often adjust our behaviour based upon what we think other people view us. Because of this, when we are in a group of people similar to ourselves, we often feel more confident. When we have too much confident, however, we begin to feel like we are holding more power than other people. And yes, this is when we start “othering” people who are different from us.

Because I’m Thai and living in Thailand, othering never really occurred to me. Sadly, I’ve actually witnessed it happening to other people. Like in the book Cry, the Beloved Country where the Whites view themselves as more superior than the Indians or the Blacks, I feel like Thai people often view themselves as having a higher status than Burmese or Laos people. Because Burmese people come to find work in Thailand, Thai people begin to feel like the have the power to control those Burmese workers.

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I had once been to a gas station near my house, and what I saw really surprised me. Instead of having lunch on the same table, Thai workers were allowed to sit on the table while Burmese workers had to sit and eat on the floor. Not only that, but the two groups weren’t even sitting together. What I’ve witnessed really shows how easy it is for us to eliminate others and view them as “different” from us even though we are all human beings.  But although the concept of othering seems to be really common, it’s never right. As human beings, we should try to include everyone and realize the fact that although there might be some differences among all of us, we still share a lot of similarities which are qualities that make us all human beings.

How to Write About China

Always use the word ‘China’ or ‘Copycat’ in your title.

Subtitles may include the words ‘Bargain’, ‘Rude’, ‘Strict’, ‘Loud’, ‘Fake’ and ‘Cheap’.

Use a photo of a busy market where people are bargaining for lower prices as the cover of your book. Make sure they look violent, loud, and uncivilized.

In your text, write as if China is a huge factory where fake brandnames are made. As soon as popular brands produce new products, they are the first to create a copy of those products. The materials that they use look exactly like those of the brandnames. What’s different is the quality of the product, which allows them to lower the price to very very cheap.

Also, make sure to mention about the food Chinese people eat. Do not mention dim-sum, Peking duck, or other higher-class meals served in Chinese cuisine. But don’t forget to talk about how Chinese people can’t live without dog meat and monkey brains. Describe in detail how they use just a pair of chopsticks to eat those food.

Among your characters, make sure to include a fat, yellow, small-eyed rich man and a another thin version of that man. The fat one is rich, and he is the master of the skinny A kung fu man taking a break to eat noodlesone. Although he has a lot of money, he never has enough. He uses the skinny man like a slave. As for the skinny one, although he is very hard working, he is never treated nor paid well. You can also include a monk as one of your characters. If you want to write about a woman, don’t forget to give her no power. She has to take the position of a servant or something worse.

Readers will be disappointed if you don’t mention kung fu or other Chinese martial arts so don’t forget that as well. Describe in details how hard the people train in their childhood and how strict the teachers are. Just mention blood and tears. Talking about strict, you can also write about how cruel the parents are to their children. Try to communicate to the readers how painful it is to be born into a Chinese family rather than a Western family.

Be sure to end your book with the phrase “One day China will rule the world” because this is what we all believe is true.

Blog Entry #11 – “Answering Che’s Calls to Action”

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For me, to”go and find out the realities and needs of those who are most undeserved and marginalized” means to get out of my comfort zone and go interact with those in need. It means accepting that my life is much more fortunate than many others and that I should stop complaining about things that are not even there for others to complain about. Although this might seem easy, I have to admit that for me, it’s really difficult.

I always compare myself to other people who seem to have a better life than me. Because of this, I often feel like my life is not good enough, and all I think about is how I can improve my own life. I start to forget that there are many people out there that would love to have a life like mine, and so I don’t even have to think about helping them. And because of all these selfish thoughts I have in my heart and mind, I’m often reluctant to go out and help many others who are in need.

But can that be my excuse? Of course not. Being born as a human, it’s really important that we are able to help our friends. Don’t think that since there’s so little you can help, it’s the same as nothing because something little for us might mean such a big thing to them.

 

 

Blog Entry #10 – “Travel and Tourism”

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I think a responsible tourist is a tourist who respects every country he is in. To me, you don’t have to make better changes to the country you visit in order to become a responsible tourist. You just have to respect the culture of the country and act accordingly.

Compared to other people, I don’t think I’ve travelled as much. I’ve been to just about 5 countries, and these countries are pretty much more advanced than Thailand. I never get to visit countries where people are in need or suffering. Because of this, I think that the experiences I gain traveling to other places are what I value most as a tourist. To be honest, even if I had a chance to visit poorer countries, I don’t quite think that I’m responsible for improving the quality of life of those living in the countries. This may sound selfish, but it’s really what I think.

So to me, the only time that traveling can be considered damaging is when tourists fail to follow the rules agreed by all other citizens. Some people might think that a responsible tourist must be able to go and help improve the conditions of the people of the country. I, however, don’t think that that’s the case. To me, you can be called a responsible tourist just by following what’s expected by the people of the country.

The Many Sides of Beijing City

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Looking at Beijing from the outside, you’ll find that this big city of China contains a lot of beautiful palaces and monuments such as the Forbidden City and the Summer Palace. These places are where most of China’s histories are contained. Visiting Beijing, you will be able to get the feel of what it was like back then in China. Although not all heritage sites are perfectly well preserved, there are more than enough to allow you to see the big picture of ancient China.

Ancient palaces and beautiful sites are, of course, not what Beijing is all about. Like many other cities, food in Beijing also serves to attract people to the place. Being in Beijing, everyone has a clear understanding that the one menu they have to add to the ‘must eat’ list is the Pecking Duck. Almost all restaurants in Beijing have this dish on their menu, and judging from how good the dish is in restaurants outside of Beijing, Peking Duck in Beijing can never go wrong. Aside from this dish, there are also many other dishes for you to check out. Jiaozhi or Chinese dumplings, for example, are popular among tourists as well.

If Beijing food isn’t enough to attract you all to this city, its nature and wildlife attractions surely will. In the same city where big buildings are located, huge, green mountains also stand along side them to provide a more peaceful feeling to the city. The beautiful natural attractions that Beijing city provides make this capital city become known as one of the most beautiful city in China. Visiting Beijing, you will surely be able to learn a lot more about the country of China. As the capital city, Beijing city does great at representing what China is like as a whole.