Starting a Blog

Earlier today, my cousin Emily reminded me that I need to document this trip, preferably through vlogging. I actually regret not documenting my time in Taiwan and Japan, although I don’t think it would have been very interesting. Roughly 90 percent of my time in Taiwan was spent in a Buddhist monastery, and a good chunk of my time in Japan was spent in a classroom. Perhaps videos of my adventures to various temples and historical sites would have been nice.

I never liked listening to my own voice though. I hate seeing pictures of myself just as much. But there’s something about my past writings that I enjoy reading (despite cringing at all of my old essays). It’s like I’m speaking to myself, but without hearing the weird tones of my own voice. There’s more thought put into it, and that means much less rambling. I can also fact check myself and make sure I’m not spewing incoherent falsehoods.

While I will take more pictures and ostensibly a lot more video this time around, I think the majority of my records will be in writing. Perhaps this will give me a chance to practice English as well. While I am sure that my Mandarin (and possibly Teochew) will improve during my time abroad, I am worried that my other languages will decline.

毎日アニメを観ると大丈夫かな

In any case, my trip to China will involve a lot more exploring, and I look forwarding to visiting tea meccas such as Wuyishan, Fenghuangshan, Hangzhou, and maybe Yunnan.

As I write this entry, I am reminded that this very act of documenting my tea travels hearkens back to the distant legacy of Song dynasty tea connoisseurs who explored scenic mountains and drank newly-grown tea prepared with fresh water from nearby springs. Just as how Song Zi’an’s 宋子安 Record of Sampling Tea Along the Eastern River 東溪試茶錄 documented teas in Fujian a thousand years ago. If Song Zi’an was alive today, I’m sure he’d have an Instagram, blog, and YouTube channel (and WeChat because… China).

Who knows—perhaps a thousand years from now, this blog will be a primary source for some pitiful undergraduate Asian Studies major who’s trying to desperately finish a thesis. 

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