The fiery horse at Sunset Meadow would often run to the end of the pasture fence and dream of flying. Her head had been filled with the bedtime adventures of the great winged horse Pegasus who rode Zeus over the sky whilst he cast lightning bolts to earth. But alas, the limited fences of Sunset Meadow were the most adventure the filly would skirt until one great day when a storm made a break in the fence. The herd had a meeting. The fence break was examined. And then, whilst the herd debated about the break, something wonderful happened.A great white Mustang appeared in front of the filly and commanded, “Follow me.” At first the filly hesitated. The herd continued their debate. The Head of the Herd commanded the herd to go to the Eastern side of Sunset Meadow. But the Great White Mustang continued to call to the filly to follow him past the break in the pasture fence. The filly nuzzled her mare, who felt the hot breath of the Great White Mustang, but couldn’t see anything.
Mama, I simply must go. The call is too strong.
But you are so young. Why can’t he follow you here into Sunset Meadow?
I don’t know, mama. All I know (and she looked at the forbidden break) is he is my destiny and I must go.
So reluctantly, and with the anger of the herd, the fiery filly began to trot towards the Great White Mustang and through the break in the fence to the Great World so far West it became East.
I grew up in a small town in Indiana. This town was so small, that I could walk into the Ben Franklin dime store and the lady behind the counter knew who my father was merely by looking at me. Except for a few limited places within the quad state area, my family really didn’t travel much, so my experience with the big wide world outside of this town was extremely limited. Much like the filly, I had been running the limits of the Sunset Meadow fence. My family had been in that area since before the Civil War with only a couple stray adventurers here and there amongst the branches of the tree.
And so it was that at the age of 21, I found myself on a plane for the first time headed for the State of California, a state I had seen only in my limited exposure to television.
In a way, I was similar to many of my students and Chinese acquaintances. Mobility is limited within the PRC. While there is transportation, you cannot just pick up and move as we can here in the USA. Sometimes, I think our freedom to move becomes our burden as we believe it to be an easy way to avoid or leave problems. In the PRC, this lack of mobility forces hope into a dark little corner of the heart.
Little did she know, but the filly was in for the ride of her life.