The moment when, after many years of hard work and a long voyage you stand in the centre of your room, house, half-acre, square mile, island, country, knowing at last how you got there, and say, I own this,
is the same moment when the trees unloose their soft arms from around you, the birds take back their language, the cliffs fissure and collapse, the air moves back from you like a wave and you can’t breathe.
No, they whisper. You own nothing. You were a visitor, time after time climbing the hill, planting the flag, proclaiming. We never belonged to you. You never found us. It was always the other way round.
I had a discussion today in my Chinese lesson about how much it costs to have a second child in China. My teacher, Ivy, is han-Chinese and has a younger brother. I asked her to explain to me how it works.
She told me that the fines varies from province to province, as the enforcing of these “crimes” are up to the digression of the local authorities. Her brother cost her family 50,000RMB ($8,000) in 1986. Today it averages at about 200,000RMB ($32,000) but within the city of Beijing can cost up to 2,000,000RMB ($323,000), an outrageous sum as the average Beijinger only makes $ 12,447/year. Luckily, the family USUALLY has 18 years to pay the fine, although this is again up to the digression of the local authorizes, and was paid in one lump sum in the case of Ivy’s brother.
If my family lived in China, my mother would owe the government nearly $1,000,000 for her crimes against the population.
Email Correspondence: Chad MIchaels and My Baby Sister
> Name: Alex Barillas > Email: XXXXXXXXXXXXX > Comments: Should i start with Dear Chad Michaels?
Dear Chad Michaels,
Hey! My name is Alexandra, Alex for short, and im 16. (Im not a very good writer so im sorry if i mis-spell some words) Im a big fan of Rupauls Drag Race and a big fan of yours. So is my sister, Kimmy, who showed my Rupauls Drag Race.(She had already seen them all. )My sister show me Rupaul when she came home from LA, where she was living with her girlfriend Mandy, who also likes RuPaul Drag Race, and was also came with her to visit. My sister and Mandy have moved to China! Which is very normal because Kimmy has been almost everywhere. I dont know how she does it but she does. Mandy left first to China without Kim because her job required it, so kim stayed with us until she could get her visa stuff. Every Night we would stay up til about 2am watching Rupaul. When we got to season 4, we fell in love. That was one if the best seasons ever. Me and Kim became big fans of you and Sharon Needles. I told kimmy, “Chads going to win, or Needles is.” When the finale came i could not ta > ke my off the screen, i only did when the Logo cummersals would come on. I was sad because u hadnt won but also happy that Sharon Neddles had. At the end of the episode, kim was like “you should email him.” So here i am, writing a very long explanation why i am writing this to say that i think you are the coolest and super pretty. You are the best. You, Sharon Needles and Alaska Thunder….from season 5, our me and my sisters fav. But in my opinion, ur the best:). Anyways i hope you read all of it, if not i understand, this is very long…sorry! Anyways, i hope you have a great day. Everyday. > -Alex (and Kimmy) >
From: Chad Michaels Date: Tuesday, July 9, 2013 Subject: Re: Contact Form Submission from Alex Barillas To: XXXXXXXXXXX
Hey Girls! Just wanna say thanks for an awesome crazy email and for being such great fans! All my love wherever you travel!!! China!!! Xo Chad