Today, as every wednesday I have chinese lecture, only the grey, foggy and rainy spring day was holding me in bed, those days you would rather stay in than out. But I wrapped out of bed, had a shower, drank my green tea and left the house. Already in the metro I noticed that it’s not as a usual day, more people as normal and the shopping mall crowded. My lecture is a one to one class at a coffee shop, you would never say how many people do the same! People were staring at me, more as I am used to, in a way that seemed as they have never seen a human being like me. After a few months in China, I realised that it is a normal reaction for people who don’t live in a big city and rarely see western people. They can look at you in a very surprised way…but its a very innocent and harmless reaction.
Anyway, after all this weird feelings and circumstances, I asked my teacher what was happening…and she explained that today is Qing Ming Jie day, which translated would be The Tomb Sweeping day. It’s a public holiday, that would give the answer to why so many people were set free from their daily work torture, but basically the main celebration is about to remember and honor the ancestors, people we loved and are no more with us, they have passed away.
For a minute my thoughts went back to last summer when my good friend died, also called the Artist of my home town, unfortunately I cannot show any of his work as he wasnt much of an Internet lover. But I can tell you that he was a great painter, my admiration for his art work are combined with the respect and appreciation I had for him. He was not only an artist, he owned a music bar called Rocky, where I used to hang out on the weekends with friends and listen to the best 80′s,90′s and modern music titles. He is gone and the bar closed, without him some colour is missing in the town. But me and his fellow friends will always affectionately remind the good moments shared with him and more then 15 years of my life story…just want to say thank you!
On my way back, at the metro trip I mainly have my head in the clouds which the spanish version is estar en las nubes, today I looked at people in another way. I started thinking that; Yes, we are different! Western versus eastern, romanic language versus a character (hieroglyphs) language , vegetal versus olive oil, but even then there are points in common that should be taken more in consideration.
We all are born, live and die…thats the true story, so instead of seeing the differences as a cultural barrier, we should find the similarities that we have as human beings, things that makes us close to each other instead of apart.For instance, in Spain we celebrate Dia de todos los Santos, and is celebrated in mainly catholic influenced countries, on the first of November and has the same purpose as the Chinese one. I am not a religious person, but it is a good way to continue thinking of loved people who are no longer amidst us.
For all of you, whose thoughts are with a loved spirit, today, tomorrow, any day, commemorating their ancestors and thank them to be part of your lives, you and me who are alive, reading, writing, and listening…