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Just got back from Chicago a couple of days ago. I went with the Studies in Drama class for about a week, saw some shows, and got a feel for the cornucopia of cultures present in the city. I finished the journal that was required for the class earlier today, and I couldn’t fit the experience into 12 pages there, so I won’t try to do justice to it now. Here’s a little excerpt from the journal though, from the afternoon we spent in Chinatown:
I was getting tired of looking like a hopeless tourist, so at Chinatown I broke from anybody else, and had lunch at the Tasty Place (how could I say no to a restaurant called the Tasty Place?), where I was the only Caucasian surrounded by Asian-Americans, and a profound absence of the English language. After ordering the “House Thick Noodles” (which turned out to be a lot like fried rice, only instead of rice, there were spaghetti noodles, and with a little hot sauce tasted like some surreal, ethnically confused Hooters hot wings) I was ordered (and I do mean ordered) to sit at an empty table. A few local teens were listening to Nelly in the back corner. As I started to eat, a 70-year-old-ish Chinese man sat down across from me, drinking coffee and reading a Chinese newspaper. We never spoke, but I feel like we had a good lunch together, sharing in a lack of understanding of one another, but with a mutual respect for the fact that such an experience could take place so effortlessly.
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