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Goodbye Philadelphia




January 7, 2020. The fateful day had finally arrived and we were ready. My grandma was the only one who got sleep that night. I was operating off of maybe an hour and we had to get to the airport around eight in the morning. My flight was at 10:42 but my grandma told me that it was customary to arrive two hours early to take care of everything BEFORE the flight. I was new to everything regarding the air To be frank, I hate flying. I mean…I. HATE. FLYING.


While on our way to the airport, my brother and grandma were assuring me that everything will be fine. Grandma reminded me that I had my Switch in carry-on and can serve as a healthy distraction.. However, my brother gave me something better to think about: international flights had alcohol. My eyes lit up at that, but my grandma rolled her eyes.


At the airport, we shared a hug and a long goodbye before I got myself checked in. I’ve been to an airport but never beyond the main area so everything was new to me. Familiar from books but new in practice Nevertheless, it was simple enough and I just sat there. I was at a loss.

Here I am. An American who was dealing with a President that had made sure that laughing stock of the world and now living a new life in a different country. It was a lot to process and I was nervous. Excited, of course, but very much nervous. So, I just sat there and let it all running through my mind. But, like clockwork for me, my excitement overrode my nervousness and I began to smile. I was finally seeing the world and I had OWEN to thank for that.


That’s not to say that the flight was easy. Far from it. When I’m in an uncomfortable situation, my “bouncer instinct”, as my friends would call it, would kick in. It’s another way of saying that I become hyper-vigilance and hyper-aware. And it was making it nigh impossible to get any sense of sleep. Seriously, I didn’t get any sleep on that blasted flight. Maybe a combined hour or so. And, yet, I survived it all. Plus, I have to say, the food was lovely and the selection of movies was delightful, too.

I made it to Chongqing around one in the morning and was greeted by Tony, a friend of Vina. We greeted each other and had a quick meal before getting my money converted. Finally, we made out way to my new home.


He explained everything about the housing but I was too tired to respond and he saw that. So, he left me alone and I finally got some sleep. I mean, my God, a man in his 30s shouldn’t be subjected to more than sixteen hours of no sleep. It’s cruel and unusual. But that doesn’t matter any more because I was finally in China.


If you have any questions about OWEN Education or Chongqing/China, feel free to contact me

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