In China, I have noticed a few things. First, with a Buddhist influence the people here generally have a calmer composure than their western counterparts. They are quiet, mindful people who don't dwell on what has already been done. This type of attitude makes life a lot more enjoyable. I'll explain why: yesterday when we finished Dinner we needed to take cabs home (there are 5 of us so we needed two). Anyways, this task proved much harder than expected and I got a cab with my younger brother and my mom, but my other brother and mom's boyfriend had to walk the 3 miles back to the hotel in the rain. Meanwhile, our driver didn't know any English and only drove once my Mom paid him 100 RNB (about 15$). Thanks to our iPhones we were able to safely get back. Regardless, the next morning while driving to the Great Wall, my mother and her boyfriend would not get off the topic. They spent the 2 hour car ride fighting about how my Mom didn't call to check on their safety (when she did) and how my mom overpaid. Here we see two wrong attachments. First, my Mom to the money. What she fails to realize is, is that yes she overpaid, but it got us home when we otherwise would have had to walk. So in some circumstances you do have to sacrifice. And for my Mom, this should hardly even be called a sacrifice, especially when the cab driver probably lives in a 2 room house.
Secondly, by my Mom's boyfriend being attached to the event itself and how it played out, he failed to enjoy my family's present company. Instead of embracing new positive energy on a new day, he was holding on to yesterday. A yesterday that, yes, may have been uncomfortable, but was more a melodramatic inconvenience than anything else. It also shows another feat of the Chinese: they are appreciative. While we were annoyed we had to walk and there was a language barrier, we got back to our five-star hotel in time for bed. We have our own rooms. After this vacation, we will return to the warmth and comfort of our house. Meanwhile these people struggle with an average income of 7$ a day. They can only have one child, not three. And they don't easily have the option to leave and explore countries as we do. We have freedoms. We have the ability to break out of routine.
So I guess what I am trying to say is that, we are on vacation and on an adventure. Instead of being caught up in what was then, what we will never come back to, we should savor each moment as it plays out. It won't always be fun, but staying present eliminates so many problems with people. If my Mom and her boyfriend had enjoyed the car ride to the Wall, talking about the view and the history of what we were going to see, they would have enjoyed their experience much more greatly. Instead, they remained angry towards each other for the whole day and this tension only builds to cause more fights and yelling, unnecessary negative energy. So when something uncomfortable or "bad" comes your way, maybe take a step back and analyze whether it's really unfortunate or just an inconvenience in our spoiled lives and then move forward. This letting go reminds us that there's always another option to suffering in a place that's already gone.