March 12, 2015

Did you ever hear about the girls in China?

Or did you ever hear a tin drum? That’s the starting lines of a 1980s song. I recalled the song when someone asked me why I love East Asia so much and why I do not travel to the U.S or Western Europe. My answer is that the East fascinated me when I was a kid. Besides the curiosity about what was on the other side of the Himalayas and the line drawings on childhood travel books, it was just that I did not meet anyone who could tell me stories from China or Vietnam or Korea - most people I knew while growing up wanted to go to the US or Western Europe.

I also blame some 1980s songs for making me miss Asia. You may wonder how could I miss something that I have never seen before. I don’t know. Sometimes I miss things that I have never experienced. I call this longing a future miss”. It is like those places are so dear to me that I am sure I will miss them even after I experience them. Russia is also one such place.

Here are some such songs:

  1. Asia by The Mo, a Dutch band.
  1. Within you’ll remain by Hong Kong band Chyna. There is a later version by a Singapore band called Tokyo Square. I like that version too. Perhaps it was the starting riffs of the Chinese Zyther (gu zheng) that caused the future miss.”


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