Bridge of Serendipity  

Alice Wong - Ecuador


August 26, 2015

When people ask me why I am taking a bridge year, I always have my answer ready. I would respond succinctly that I have an intense desire to gain maturity, as I will not be eighteen upon entering college. I want to understand the local culture, learn Spanish and learn how to dance. I want to develop leadership skills and become a global citizen. And if I were feeling particularly inspired, I might throw in a line or two about living abroad for the first time out of Hong Kong, a place I call home up to this point of my life.

But the reality is my standing in the world looks so unclear. There is much uncertainty and mystery in the journey ahead. I am not sure where it will lead me. I am not sure how it will begin and end. I am not sure of what I am not sure. And that is totally fine. If I knew what I wanted to do, I would not be sitting in front of my laptop at two in the morning, without a clue on what to write for my first blog entry. However, things could get dull and presumptuous if I already knew what I wanted to do.

What I do know is I am choosing the path to Ecuador with a new language, a new family and a new adventure. Having been on the same track for 17 years, I’m now ready to take the leap of faith. I am willing to get off the beaten path, to explore, to grow and to learn. I am willing to be somewhere I’m not comfortable being. I do want to make a difference in my Ecuadorian community, despite how small it seems. And hopefully during the following eight months, I will be able to figure out how to spend my next four to six years doing something that I am passionate about.

This Chinese poem is for every pilgrim soul who longs for serendipity in life:

《路上的浪蕩者

 

我一步一步在路上走

不管周圍的人怎樣匆匆忙忙

我有我的速度

不管汽車怎樣左彎右拐

我有我的方向

有大魚在水族箱游過

食檔有巨大的魚蛋模型

都不能吸引我

有推着手堆車上的厚紙皮箱向前

有踏着自行車向前

有司機駕駛着勞斯萊斯向前

都有一定的方向。風過處

花花綠綠的衣裳

逐漸變成萬花筒片片碎片

 

我不必看得太清楚

我在逐漸走向心的路上

外面變得朦朧了

不要以為我乖離了正途

不要以為我在兜圈子

我只是不再走每個人走的路

不再匆匆忙忙趕前去

不再排上這條那條隊伍

走入這個陣營攻擊那個陣營

我的左

我的右

沉重拍打地面

按照心中地圖

慢慢地走

偶然張開眼睛

攝入城市的五光十色

太亮了,避開它

我繼續走我的路

At times we let life guide us, at times we take life by the horns. One thing is for sure. No matter how well we plan, we can always expect the unexpected. And we will only understand the miracle of life fully when we allow the unexpected to happen.

Cheers,

Alice

 

 

Alice Wong