“Mexican Food”

To start, I’ve been craving Mexican food for the past few weeks.

I’d like to have a taco, or a burrito, or a quesadilla, or an enchilada, but unfortunately these things don’t exist in Fuzhou. I got my hopes up at one point when I found a restaurant called Califresh, which supposedly offered all of the above on their menu. Unfortunately though, it was reported as closed online, so I don’t think I will ever know if they do a good job at making Californian Mexican food.

Ling Min—also a fan of Mexican food—was interested in trying what Fuzhou has to offer, so we took to the subways in search of a small “Mexican” restaurant near the city center.

It was a small establishment that could seat a maximum of eight guests at a time. Their menu, which was slightly more expensive than the Indian restaurant, featured a variety of burritos, spaghetti, and fried rice. Vegetarian options were sparse, but I made by with a vegetable and beef fried rice since Ling Min ate the beef.

My fried rice, which was served with a peculiar slice of grapefruit.

While I definitely prefer the Indian restaurant, it wasn’t terrible (albeit slightly overpriced for unsatisfying portions), and it was a nice break from the monotonous flavors at FNU’s dining hall.

Upon returning to the dorms, I was met with a message from my other friends.

“Is there tea tonight?” one friend asked.

“Sure, what tea would you like?” I asked.

I began to boil some water when there was a knock on the door and four classmates came in.

“Do you still have Exploding Kittens?” one asked, referring to one of our favorite card games.

I grabbed the set from my desk and handed it to them. They began to set up the game as I prepared the tea.

It’s always fun to have good company, and I really enjoy having friends over for tea and games. While I typically appreciate tea alone as I work, having tea with others is a completely different experience.

Tea Shopping and Indian Food

Last week, I met up with a fellow Fulbrighter in Fuzhou to buy some tea. And so, we went to my usual tea mall and explored a few shops, looking specifically for qingxiang tie guanyin 清香鐵觀音, a lightly-oxidized oolong, and zhengshan xiaozhong 正山小種, which is what we’d consider in the US “black tea” (although in China it’s considered “red tea” hongcha 紅茶).

Upon arriving at the tea mall, we walked into a place staffed by an older couple with TIE GUANYIN in bold letters on the shop sign.

“Do you have any tie guanyin?” I asked innocently.

“No,” the shopkeeper replied. “We don’t sell tie guanyin.”

What a lie. But oh well, I’ve been hit with the “you look too young to actually spend money on tea, so I’m just gonna wave you away” treatment enough times now, so we went next door to another place that had a bold TIE GUANYIN sign on the door.

One middle-aged lady sat at the table and invited us to sit.

“What are you looking for?” she prompted.

Qingxiang tie guanyin, and our budget is about 200 rmb per jin (500 grams),” I replied.

She brought out two varieties for us to sample.

Upon trying it, my heart sank. I had gotten ripped off on my previous trip. Last time I came here to purchase tie guanyin, I had sampled three varieties and ended up spending almost double the price for something that was comparable to what this shop was selling for merely 230 rmb.

While the flavor was mediocre, it was a very smooth tea. Rather than leaving my throat dry and course, it was very refreshing, although I would have preferred it a little bit heavier. It was something I felt like I could just gulp down rather than something I would sip and savor.

As she talked on and on about her tea-selling experience, I turned to my Fulbright friend and asked in English, “Thoughts?”

We had a brief exchange. Neither of us were particularly impressed, and so we decided we’d go elsewhere.

“Wow,” the shopkeeper said. “You’re foreigners!”

We nodded sheepishly.

I wasn’t sure what to think. I guess we both look Asian enough to pass the initial appearance test, and we were fluent enough to get by without raising any alarms. It wasn’t until we spoke in English that our friend the shopkeeper realized we weren’t from the local area.

In any case, we bid her farewell and walked in search of another tie guanyin shop. Being in Fujian, there are plenty of places that sell them.

My Fulbright friend was not particularly impressed, so we went to a second shop.

As soon as we walked in, our host remarked, “You’re not from around these parts, are you?”

We were taken aback. Our previous host didn’t realize we weren’t locals, but this shopkeeper was astute enough to catch that point before we even sat down.

“No, we’re from the US,” I replied.

“Ah, that explains it,” she continued. “I used to live in Spain. You Americans carry yourselves differently from those of us who grew up in China.”

While I can typically notice the subtle traits that distinguish an Asian American from someone who grew up in Asia, I hadn’t thought that it would be visible to the older generation. But I suppose her exposure to a variety of cultures helped her identify that we were not locals, despite our phenotypic expression.

After explaining what we wanted and what our budget would be, she brewed two types. Although I specifically requested qingxiang, she decided to give us a sample of nongxiang as well. Just in case.

While it was more fragrant than the other shop, the tea left a sense of dryness in my throat.

After drinking a few rounds and using the restroom two or three times, we decided this would be a good purchase (it was a bit cheaper than the other place), and that going to another shop might not be worth it.

To seal the deal, the kind shopkeeper gifted us a few samples of their Wuyi Rock Tea. She made it clear that these were very cheap, but that they weren’t too terrible nonetheless.

After making a small purchase of 250 grams, we ventured to Sanfang qixiang, Fuzhou’s most touristy place, looked around at some bookstores, and then met up with another classmate for Indian food.

It wasn’t bad, but I was really disappointed in the fact that the food here isn’t spicy.

We also ordered way too much. After three curries, two types of naan, rice, shawarmas, and a rice pudding dessert, my stomach felt like it was about to explode. But wow, that naan was really, really good.

While I haven’t been able to find a Mexican restaurant in Fuzhou yet, I’m glad to know that there are options for non-Chinese food here. While I don’t mind Chinese food, eating at the same dining hall every single day gets a bit tough.

A bunch of other things have happened over the past few weeks, but I won’t be sharing every detail about my adventures here.

I think my next post will be a reflection on the decade ahead.

Christmas Hunting

Christmas doesn’t exist in China.

In the US, I’m used to hearing Christmas music blasting everywhere, charming lights and decorations adorning every shop, but unfortunately there is no sign of celebration here.

So, feeling a bit in need for some holiday cheer, I went out to find some. As it turns out, if you want to experience Christmas in Fuzhou, there’s only one place: a lavish shopping center named Art Mall.

The signage in the subway made it pretty clear that this was a festive mall.

Being a relatively short walk from the subway station, it featured a welcoming reindeer and outdoor Christmas display. Note—there are no nativity scenes or anything too Jesus-y, probably because there are barely any Christians or Catholics in China.

The mall was completely empty, despite the lavish decorations.

Anyways, Saint Nick was there, and so were his reindeer. And as I entered the mall, the familiar tune of Jingle Bells serenaded me.

Ah, Christmas, I’ve found you at last.

This was part of the decor at one of the uber fancy restaurants.

After a round of browsing the way-too-expensive shops, Ling Min and I went to the library.

Now, I had been to the library before for the sado demo, but I hadn’t really explored the place. Apparently, there was an entire wing for tea books on the eighth floor, and then adjacent to that was a wing for calligraphy books.

Well, I think I’ve found my new home.

I’ll be returning with my laptop and a thermos full of tea to do research. There are way more books on tea in the city library than there are at Fujian Normal.

To wrap up the night, we went to another fancy mall across the street from the library. While not quite as fancy as Art Mall, it was still pretty lavish. Since we were both hungry by then, we decided to get dinner at an American restaurant called Smile. Weird name, but sure, whatever. I hadn’t had American food since coming here, and it seemed like this place was fancy enough to not disappoint.

It didn’t disappoint in taste, that’s for sure.

I got a vegetarian entree, which was essentially just roasted vegetables, but they were prepared really well. I also got a mushroom soup in a bread bowl, which was pretty good too (although the soup could have been a bit warmer).

My vegetarian entree!

While they got the flavor and menu pricing right, the portions they served were definitely not US-sized. I felt kinda ripped off because if I’m paying US prices, I think I should get the quantity I’d typically have in the US. They were definitely serving Chinese-sized portions.

But oh well, it tasted great.

And also, by the end of the meal, I actually wasn’t left hungry. I had expected that it wouldn’t be enough, but the bread + the entree actually filled me up.

I think the creamy soup was what filled me up.

In any case, we went home to prepare for Yongqi’s birthday party, which went well. There were many balloons, a beautiful birthday cake, three bowls of noodles, and two rounds of Uno. We had wanted to play Exploding Kittens instead, but… we had far too many people.

The noodles were good though. Noms.

On our way back, we passed by a small shop that sold soy milk and Teochew cuisine! I’ll be back to see what they have. If I’m lucky, maybe they’ll have cha kueh. Fingers crossed!

Frozen 2

No spoilers here, don’t worry.

So, Frozen 2 came out a few weeks ago, and while I’ve been meaning to watch it, trying to find it in English and in 2D in Chinese theaters was a stupidly difficult task.

Now, that’s not to say that there are no English movies in China. The main issue was that every time Frozen 2 was being shown, it was in 3D.

While that might not be much of an issue to most viewers, I haven’t had the best experience with 3D movies.

My first experience was in Ms. Schubel’s fifth grade class during a field trip to OMSI. Now, I love OMSI just as much as any other young Oregonian elementary school student (and I love that they show anime movies!!!!!), but their state-of-the-art IMAX theater was the highlight of the trip. We would go, see some cool 3D documentary about nature, and then come home well-educated and inspired by the wonders of modern technology.

The movie started, and I was amazed at the surround sound, the expansive view, and the sheer reality of it all.

Then the nausea came.

About 15 minutes in, I couldn’t keep watching, so I closed my eyes and waited until the movie was over. I sat on the bus ride home trying to keep my lunch down. Upon arriving home, I hobbled to my bed and crashed.

I also remember watching—or, failing to watch—The Adventures of Sharkboy and Lavagirl, also due to issues with 3D nausea. Although, that was back when 3D meant thin red-blue glasses, so perhaps modern technology had corrected that issue.

I then recalled my recent encounter with 3D at the Harry Potter section of Universal Studios. I hobbled off of that ride and sat on the floor in a cold sweat for about 30 minutes before the nausea subsided enough for me to keep walking. But eh, perhaps that was just the ride and not the 3D, I thought to myself.

Given that the only theater offering Frozen in 2D and English was very far away, I decided to risk it. After all, some movies are worth throwing up for.

Well. After watching Frozen 2, I’d say that it wouldn’t be worth throwing up for, but I’ll leave my disappointments and commentary to myself for now.

On the bright side, I was able to get through the whole movie without any sense of nausea! Technology truly has improved.

A Pleasant Post Office Visit

I had to ship scroll to the US, and honestly I was really dreading another visit to the post office. Memories of stamping postcards and overly personal questions buzzed around in my head.

I got to the post office, but it was closed. Hours were MWF, 2 pm to 5 pm.

What post office has such limited hours?!

I then remembered that there’s another post office nearby, so I walked another few minutes to reach the other office.

I walked in, and an employee in his 30s—wearing a suit and tie—addressed me, “Shipping something?”

“Yup. To the US,” I replied.

“ID please.”

I passed him my passport and he typed my information in.

“Please fill this out,” he said as he handed me the shipping form.

I filled it out as he inspected my scroll.

“No text?” he asked.

“No text,” I replied.

“I’ll see if I can find you a nicer box for this,” he offered.

“Oh thanks!”

He rummaged around as I continued filling out the form. After a few minutes, he came back with my scroll wrapped up in a plastic shipping bag.

“No box, but this will keep it from rolling around,” he said as he put it on the scale.

“That’s fine. Thanks for your help.”

“If you’re not in a hurry, it’ll be about $17 to ship it to the US. Express is going to be around $50.”

“$17 is fine.”

I paid, got my receipt, and left.

What a difference.

The Most Bizarre Post Office Visit

I had to ship things to the US today, and so—after exhausting all online avenues to find out how much it would cost to a 2 kilogram box to the US—I ended up going to the post office (spoiler: there were three options ranging from $20 to $60—I chose the middle option, which cost $30).

Upon arriving at the post office, the employee asked for my Chinese ID card. Being a foreigner, I don’t have one. But she said that a passport would suffice, so I went to retrieve my passport.

Upon arriving with my passport, she handed me a shipment form with a template on how to send packages to the US. Coincidentally, the mock address was Portland, Oregon, USA.

Fortunately, I hadn’t sealed the box yet. After filling out my shipment form, the employee dumped the contents of my box out to inspect my parcels one by one, undoing all of my bubble wrap and foam packaging before exclaiming, “Aha! There’s tea in here.”

“Yes. I know,” I replied nonchalantly. “I declared it on the form.”

She ignored me and proceeded to repackage everything, except without much care or effort. When the arranged boxes didn’t fit (because she didn’t care to put them in the way they came), she resorted to shoving them down, as if the wood would somehow compress like a folded t-shirt.

“Excuse me,” I interjected. “The boxes are flipped so they won’t fit. If you’ll just let me do it—”

“No, if you touch this box, I will have to reinspect it again,” she declared.

“But—the lid on that one isn’t even on all the way. That’s why it’s not balanced.”

“No, it’s on.”

She taped the box shut. Alas, I hope my bubble wrap will protect its contents.

Then came the questioning, “How’d you get a US passport? You don’t look American.”

“I’m an American citizen,” I replied.

“Like, you have a green-card?” she prodded.

I didn’t think this line of questioning was necessary or even appropriate.

“No… I’m a natural-born citizen,” I answered.

“Oh, so your parents immigrated,” she assumed. “Must have been rich.”

They were actually dirt-poor, and my dad was a refugee, but she didn’t need to know that.

“So what do they do?” she asked. “What line of business?”

“My dad’s retired,” I answered, which probably sounded better than “my dad used to work for a grocery store before it closed and my mom washes dishes at the juvenile detention center.”

“Ah, so your brother’s handling the business.”

“I’m an only child.”

“Interesting…” she paused for a moment. “Your family must have some serious sources of passive income.”

I mean, if you count social security as passive income, my dad’s rolling in the dough with his monthly check in the mail.

“Can you tell me how much my shipment will cost?”

She ignored my question, “You don’t look American at all.”

I sighed in exasperation. The bell rang. I had been standing in the post office for an hour, half of which had been spent answering overly-personal questions.

“So, can you tell me how I can get a US visa cheaply and quickly?”

“Dunno. I’ve never had to apply for one.”

“How much money does it take to buy a green card?”

“Dunno. I’ve never had to buy one.” (I also don’t think that’s how the green card process works…)

She suddenly changed the topic, “I don’t think you’re American. You speak Mandarin too fluently to be American.”

“Foreign language classes exist.”

“Yeah, but look at all the people learning English here. They don’t sound like Americans no matter how long they learn the language. But you! You sound like you’re from Guangdong or something.”

She was close. My ancestors were from Guangdong, and I have to admit that my Mandarin does feature a distinct Cantonese-Teochew accent.

“So, the package?” I asked again.

“Can you stamp these for me?” she pulled out a stack of postcards and handed me a sheet of stamps.

I started processing them as she finally began typing in the details for my shipment. As I stamped them, I realized how bizarre this whole situation was. Why was I suddenly doing her job? Not that I minded, but still, it felt really weird.

“I don’t know how to type lower-case letters on here,” she told me.

“All caps is fine,” I replied. (Aren’t lower-case letters the default?) I glanced at her keyboard. She definitely had her caps lock on.

“Do you want this to be shipped via air, sea, or a mid-option?” she asked.

“How much do they each cost?”

“Uhhhhh. Not sure,” she replied.

“Can you give me the cost first so that I can make an educated decision?”

“Hang on a moment.”

A few more minutes passed.

“It’ll be $60 by air, but that’s quickest—it’ll get there maybe in a week or so? And then it’ll be $20 by sea, but there’s no telling when it’ll get there. And then there’s the middle option for $30, which will get there within the month.”

“Let’s do the middle option. Can you also get me a tracking number?”

She typed a few notes into her computer and gave me a slip with the tracking number.

“So… why do people choose to study abroad in the US? Isn’t it expensive?”

“Yup,” I replied. “Very expensive. Student debt is terrible.”

“You’re making a good decision to study in China. I’m sure it’s cheaper. We should charge you foreigners more.”

Most international students here actually receive full-ride scholarships and stipends from the Confucius Institute, but I didn’t bring that up.

“It’s such a hassle to get a student visa to go to the US too,” she returned to her earlier point. “You sure you don’t know an easier way to get one? Somebody to talk to?”

I was confused. Did she genuinely think I had some secret way of getting US visas? I entertained the idea of telling her to stand at the embassy door and press up-up-down-down-left-right-left-right-B-A-start. If the Konami code worked to unlock secrets in video games, perhaps it would unlock the secrets she needed to get her visa. “Nope, I have no idea how to get a visa to enter the US.”

“Any friends in Guangzhou that might? I know the consulate is there.”

Coincidentally, I’m actually going to meet up with some people from the consulate later this week. But, I haven’t actually met anybody yet, so my answer was no. I don’t have any friends in Guangzhou.

“Why does it say here you’re living in the dorms?” she suddenly exclaimed.

I was confused again. I had written that down at the beginning. Did it suddenly occur to her that I live on campus? “Because I live in the dorms.”

“But you’re American!”

My headache grew, and I could feel my brain cells dying. The screech of my receipt being printed didn’t help my throbbing head.

“What does that have to do with living in the dorms?”

“International students live in dorms?”

“Where else would they live?”

“Dunno,” she glanced at the freshly printed receipt. “Are the dorms nice?”

“They’re not bad.”

“So how’d you get to live in the dorms?”

“I was assigned a dorm. I didn’t have to do anything special.”

“We should charge more for dorms too…” she muttered as she handed me my shipping receipt.

She looked like wanted to try her hand at a few more questions, but since I now had a receipt in-hand, I excused myself and bolted out the door.

After a bizarre afternoon, I am now back in my dorm drinking some tea. Ah, it is a wonderful cure for headaches.

Cyber Monday

For those you back home in the US, Cyber Monday has yet to come. But in China, November 11 marked a day of online deals.

My list this year was not particularly expensive compared to years past. Granted, in the US I would have gone straight for electronics, which tend to be pricy. While I had considered getting a smartphone, I decided that there was no need. Albeit slow, my cell phones both work (my usual phone turned out to be locked into the T-Mobile network, so I’m using a cheap one I got in Taiwan a few years back for mobile data and calls).

Instead, I went on Taobao (essentially the Chinese version of Amazon), and filled my shopping cart with goods.

I went shopping in-person as well, opting to spend my Monday at the tea mall I had visited before. When the day was done, I had purchased—either online or in-person:

Three books on tea
Two books on calligraphy
Two kilograms of tea leaves
Two teapots
One desk
Two table runners
And quite unexpectedly, four and half tatami mats.

While I hadn’t intended to purchase the tatami mats, the price went lower, and lower, and lower. And to seal the deal, the store also threw in two free cushions.

I don’t think my room actually has enough area to lay out all of the mats unless I remove some furniture, but it was a very good deal. At the very least, I can ship them to the US and it’d still be considered cheap.

Research has picked up recently, and as more books come in, I’m getting a better idea of how different authors are contributing to and building a contemporary tea culture. In addition to tea research though, I’ve dabbled a bit in guqin research—both in deciphering old qin tablature and in reading scholarly articles on guqin history. I’m honestly surprised to see that barely anything has been done on the intricacies of guqin music theory or the role of music in Chinese philosophical discourse.

In terms of my main research project, guqin as a culture serves as a particularly interesting foil to tea culture. It’s diverse, separated into regional schools; it’s writings are intensely theoretical, unlike tea’s more practical writings; and it has a very explicit connection to self-refinement.

In some ways, guqin reminds me of martial arts. It’s regionally defined, and there’s an explicit master-disciple relationship (which isn’t necessarily true with tea).

As I near the 1/3 mark of my ten months in China, I feel increasingly confident that I’ll return with worthwhile experiences. If anything, I’ve learned more than I had expected to learn with guqin, and I’ve had the fortune of meeting more tea experts than I had ever dreamed of prior to arriving in Fuzhou.

Edit: I wrote this on November 11. Since then, I’ve gotten more tea, a stove, some incense, and all sorts of other stuff.

Matcha in Fuzhou

After a long day of tea drinking with the aunties, I opted to practice at home instead of showing up to guqin class Saturday morning. It was shaping up to be a busy day already, and I was anticipating both a calligraphy competition and—surprisingly—sado demonstration at the Fuzhou City Library in the afternoon.

Let’s start with the calligraphy competition.

Aside from the entire thing being rather poorly run (we were given paper but not mats or ink, the tables were way too small, and the paper was way too big), my fatal mistake was that I submitted a piece of semi-cursive calligraphy.

As I walked out of the room, I noticed that everybody else had submitted regular script.

I froze. Did I misread the requirements? No—the brochure stated clearly that we were free to submit any script we’d like. So did everybody submit standard script because of personal preference?

As I walked to the lobby, a classmate came up to me and said, “Hey—what script was that? The one you just submitted. I can’t really read what it says.”

I laughed, “It’s semi-cursive.”

“Oh,” she replied. “Perhaps the judges will like that your piece is unique?”

I shrugged. We both knew my submission would be cast off to the side because there wasn’t anything to compare it to. It’d be extremely difficult to rank it against under pieces if the script is totally different.

It was 3:30. The sado demonstration had just begun. I hadn’t had matcha in months, and the thought of potentially tasting some again compelled me to leave.

The awards ceremony for the competition was at 4:30, but I wasn’t planning on sticking around. I dashed out of the building and hopped onto the subway train, ultimately making it to the library by 4:15.

It was a demonstration on bonryaku, the first temae I had learned when I was living in Kyoto. It was interesting as I had never heard sado being explained in Chinese before. The audience—mostly local tea connoisseurs and people affiliated with Fujian’s tea industry—were curious about how to grade and price matcha, whereas in my past experiences with American classmates, people typically ask about the wagashi.

In the end, I got to whisk and drink a nice hot bowl of matcha, and the instructor mentioned that while small, there is an Urasenke community in Fuzhou (or at least there was five years ago). She offered to contact them for me and see if they’re still active. If so, I’d finally be able to practice tea again! Fingers crossed~

Textiles and Tea

I woke up early Friday morning to visit my friend the tea arts professor. She had some other instructors she wanted to introduce me to. But, with everybody being busy, our meeting would be limited to 30 minutes.

While this wouldn’t be enough to talk about much, it would at least be a good introduction, and I might get to meet up with them again later. When Fulbright told us that research in China requires a lot of connections and playing guanxi cards, I didn’t realize the extent to which this is necessary. I’m very fortunate to have made so many friends through traditional arts.

We arrived at the offices at 9:20, and water was already boiling. Two other middle-aged ladies were chatting. One was an office assistant, the other was a tea merchant. After introductions, I found out that the tea merchant primarily sold white tea, which I had been curious about anyways.

Upon deeper inquiry, I decided that this would be one main focus during my stay in Fuzhou. White tea seems to be a primary example of shifting tea cultures in the region. To be clear, this is all from hearsay—I’ll need to do more research before being sure. Despite having gone unnoticed for most of Chinese history, there were a few policies enacted in 2013 that aimed to boost white tea production while also regulating the use of pesticides in growing white tea. This has led to a boom in white tea production and sales, with people collecting white tea cakes in a fashion similar to puer cake collection (although it’s nowhere near that expensive… yet).

And now, white tea is being touted as this healthy, anti-inflammatory, all-natural tea, with some recent data showing that white tea production and consumption in China has steadily grown over the past five years, likely as a result of the new policies.

But while these agricultural policies create more supply, they don’t create demand. The demand is being generated through marketing white tea as healthier, and now through tying it to the greater realm of Chinese tea culture. As one of the professors mentioned, this is difficult to do because although “white tea” as a term is in pre-modern texts, it doesn’t actually refer to the white tea we consume today.

But nonetheless, the industry seems to be fairing rather well from the health-oriented marketing alone. Fuding, where a lot of white tea is produced, is near Mt. Taimu, a major tourist attraction and scenic park—which is nice because the foot-traffic alone is enough to sell tea. I wonder if the pairing of tourist destinations and tea production is a conscious decision on part of local (or perhaps national) policy-makers. It certainly helped sell tea and promote an aesthetic of literati-in-nature-drinking-tea in the Ming, and it’s fun to see how this is being reimagined in the present day.

Okay. Enough about white tea, for now at least.

The meeting ended up lasting eight hours rather than 30 minutes. We drank a few rounds of tea, had lunch, and then went to a textiles workshop to drink more tea. Over the course of eight hours, I was treated to a wonderful assortment of rougui, shuixian, and white peony—all Fujian specialties. I also got to meet artisans working to create tea-based dyes for textiles (this is another side of tea as a commodity that I haven’t begun to dig into).

After a long day and plenty of new friends, I went back to campus…

Only to meet another new friend.

Huang Yu is a doctoral candidate writing his dissertation on ink stones. Could this get any nerdier? Perhaps not. He’s also a wonderful calligrapher. And he speaks Cantonese. We connected really well, and after gifting me a box of chrysanthemum tea, he invited me to come join him in calligraphy lessons some time.

At this rate, I’ve met so many people (both young and old) in traditional arts that I don’t know if I’ll have enough time in my life to learn from them. But at the very least, I’m glad I know them and can pay them visits in the future—they’re all doing some very cool things.