【150702】第39期: Call me stubborn

绝望罗勒 (布丁小葵) 资深达人
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发表于:2015-07-02 10:48 [只看楼主] [划词开启]


因为想考翻译证,最近很喜欢看China Daily,也很喜欢把China Daily中颇有意思的新闻抄录下来练笔。
之前用茄子说的方法,把新闻中不懂的单词抄下来,以首字母排好,然后按字母顺序一个一个地背。这样在背完A字母的单词后,看新闻就不会再出现一个以A开头而我又不懂的单词了。这个方法听起来好像很玄乎,但真照着做了大半年,发现现在看新闻真的几乎没有一个不懂的以A开头的单词了。好神奇
当然,我不是说茄子说这个方法真有多好,只是觉得把背单词和看新闻结合在一起,还挺有意思的,而且从某个奇怪的方面而言,可是相当有成就感的哦!因为新闻的用语比较固定,同一类话题中,单词出现的重复率可是相当高的哦!

熊孩子,趁着立夏的热量,开始学习吧!


Please write down your wild guess on words below, and check it out after you finish reading news.
shackle
creepy
booze and boobs


Call me stubborn, but I knew what I wanted and grabbed it

Often nicknamed “Old Duan”, my real name is Duan Yimeng. I am a Hutong girl, born and bred in Beijing. I majored in English Intercultural Communication and had a multicultural college life at my beloved Beijing International Studies University, known to many as “Er Wai”. I temporarily suspended my schooling to join an overseas internship in southern Italy’s Bari, teaching Chinese and English in a private school located 100 meters away from the Mediterranean Sea, after which I set out on a whirlwind trip around Europe, taking all of these as my once-in-a-lifetime gap year experience in 2013.

Obstacles:
The main obstacle I might have been confronted with was myself. I was extremely lucky to have such supportive parents and a you-can-do-anything-you-want college because usually parents and school are the main objectors. So there was only one obstacle left and that was me. If I didn’t want to go, no one would make me. If I wanted it but failed to make it come true, that means I didn’t work hard enough. Only when you work hard enough and don’t know how to work harder can you say: “I have done all my best”. That’s why I said if there ever was a main obstacle, that would be myself.
I didn’t want to spend my whole gap year on crazy travel because I planned to do something meaningful. So I chose to join an overseas internship first before I set out on my European journey. However, this internship took nine months to apply for, which was extremely arduous and almost defeated me. Most candidates would give up during the long application process and the difficult interviews that both mentally and physically exhausted my willing heart. For me, I sent out 79 applications within nine months, 30 percent no reply, 30 percent said no, 30 percent I didn’t want to go there. Europe was my only dream place and there was not a second choice. But Europe was a hot destination that attracted candidates from all over the world, which made it even harder to get an offer. I told myself that either I went to Europe or I didn’t go anywhere. I knew I was being stubborn, but that’s who I am. When I focus on and stick to one thing, there is no second choice anymore.
Not entirely sure about the gap year plan, I didn’t tell anyone about it except my parents and my closest friends. They witnessed my struggles during that unforgettable nine months. It left me to prepare two paths: one is forget about my gap year and finish my college just like the others the other is continue to work hard to make it come true. Within one month, I had to deal with my graduation thesis, six essays, three exams and a 300,000-word book that I had taken up before my gap year plan was initiated. The book was about learning American slang from the TV series The Big Bang Theory by the way. At the same time I had to make sure that my gap year plans were still progressing. All the tough tasks even put me in hospital at the end of December 2012. Yet, I still hung on, didn’t give up, not even let the thought of giving up sneak into my head.
Finally, as they say “God helps those who help themselves”, I received an offer from Italy on a beautiful February night. This offer became my wings to take me to Europe. I guess no one can refuse a chance to visit Italy. So I said yes. After all those twists and turns, I eventually made it. If it is meant to be, it will be.

My goals:
My gap year wish was simple: I just wanted to stop to see this world. I chose to do that because I knew it was the only time I got to do this. I mean being a student, obviously the best “occupation” in the world. You get to sit around and read books all day and have really great conversations about ideas. You could just leave behind everything familiar and comforting, and then go traveling. People in the world are not really doing that I guess. You could go up to everyone here and say: “I am a musician” and no one will punch you in the face. My student time was running out. I wanted to seize my last carefree time to do what I want and to be what I expect to be, even something not usual, something crazy. But when else I can get to do this since youth flies?
First finish the internship in Italy and at the same time travel all over this fabulous country, then travel around Europe by myself. Having been playing the piano since I was six, I am a huge classical music fan. So I fancy Europe maybe more than anyone. And that is why I so wanted to apply for internship programs in Europe. What’s more, with the convenience of Schengen visa, I could travel across European countries easily. More than one country at a time, which is very cool. I think traveling alone provides the greatest possibility to experience different psychology, different way of life that I might not be able to taste in my own life time. For me, this gap year was much longer than the four years I got to spend at my university because I was truly willing to regard everything that happened to me on the journey as a lesson and everyone I met along the way as a teacher. They are better than textbooks and papers.

Reactions from family and friends
I had this huge plan when I was a freshman at university and kept working on it since. Besides studying hard and shaping characters at school, I did a lot of homework about my trip before I started in order to spend as little money as I possibly could. Of course, my parents sponsored me in a way that I could never thank them enough. With the limited money they gave me and I saved from part-time jobs and internships over the past three years at college, I flew to my dreamland.
I am so fortunate to have supportive and understanding parents because I know this gap year stuff is not common in China now and most parents are very likely to say no. The education in my family is more like a western style. My parents encourage me to have individual thoughts and opinions. They make me learn to be independent in life as well as in studies. They teach me things outside textbooks. They support everything I choose.
As to friends around me, they said that I did something they would never dream to do while some said I did something they dreamt but never had the courage to do. But I said, I dreamt, I wanted, and I did. Dream is not a rare word for the process of growing up and for the whole world, but only few people consider it as a REAL part of his own life and take it seriously.

About Bari, Italy
Some people asked why I chose Bari, an anonymous small city while there are so many big historic cities in Italy and the rest of Europe. I grew up in a bustling capital where traffic congestion, business and ambition are the buzzwords for the city. I wanted to see small places. I wanted to meet less busy people. I wanted to visit that kind of life. I wanted a great escape.
My internship provided me with a huge chance to meet and talk to people. My students were from different age groups, from youth to the elderly, from unemployed youngsters to successful businessmen. I was the teacher to them in class while they became my teacher after class. Well, life teacher I guess. They taught me how to slow down my pace, piece together life stories and appreciate its full meaning. I taught them Chinese and English, basically just languages. But what they taught me was their attitude to life which enabled me to reflect on my own.
My gap year has made me fully understand the essence of my major: by studying others and communicating with others that we learn better ourselves. Only when we know ourselves better can we live life in a way that is positively peaceful and sincerely diligent rather than a rush for quick success. I call this attitude “small life”. Usually big wisdom lies in small life.
I had a home stay family in Italy, who turned out to be as close as my real family. I lived with a single Italian girl named Francesca. She was a shop assistant and worked for a famous local Italian designer brand. She didn't get her salary for months because of the economic crisis that happened to Italy that year. Her twin sister Simona, was the owner and the only teacher at the private school where I worked. Simona has a talented tongue. She taught English, German, French and Spanish. She was very nice and great to work with.

Suggestions:
Follow your heart, believe in what you believe and stick to what you stick to no matter how hard it can be. I remember Ellen Degeneres’ speech to the graduating class of 2009, the Katrina class, at Tulane University. She said: “To live life with integrity and not to give into peer pressure to try to be something that you are not. To live life as an honest and compassionate person to contribute in some way”. This really touched me a lot. Besides, there is a movie called Legends of the Fall, which stars Brad Pitt and Anthony Hopkins. At the end, the voiceover says: “Some people hear their inner voices with great clearness. And they live by what they hear. Such people become crazy or they become legends”. What I am trying to say is do the right thing that you think worth doing. Don’t be shackled by creepy people who don’t understand you and creepy things that are not worth living for.

First: Experience weighs far more than a diploma. Realize the importance of how your experience at college prepares you before you step into society.
Second: Things do not happen, things are made to happen. So watch out for the signals that life offers you.
Third: Make good use of chance and youth. Don’t waste your time on booze and boobs.




Sentence-Making: Please make sentences with words below.
shackle
creepy
booze and boobs


It is a long article, but I hope that every dreamer can have an eye on it. Sure, it is just a simply story, but it teaches us a lot, especially for those who have a dream in their heart, but have no courage or inner power to make it come true. Before making a plan or setting a goal, the first thing you should remind in heart is: no sweet without sweat. Troubles and difficulties would not just be the acquaintance along you way. As time pass, and the longer time you stick on your goal, the closer relationship you three would get to be. However, please do not be afraid when they are with you. Try to absorb them as a kind of once-in-a-lifetime experience. You know, not everyone has the chance to encounter with so much troubles and diffculties, which on the other hand, demostrate your constant efforts and your wade before reaching the spot of success. I am not a clever girl in studying, but I love studying, especially studying in languages. Not like others, I don't think I need to apply for an overseas university or go outside to further my academic career, since I just study for fun, for my pleasure. It is my goal to be a life-long learner - Call me stubborn, but I like it to be.


答题区

1、What is the meaning of "shackle" in the article?
2、What is the meaning of "booze and boobs" in the article?
3、What is the meaning of "creepy" in the article?

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