During college, I studied abroad in Beijing one summer for 8 weeks to learn Mandarin Chinese. 
I found myself on the other side of the world with people I had just met, speaking a language i was not fluent in. In America. I had felt more Asian than American, but in China, I felt more American than Chinese. My American accent and my American clothing were what gave it away. Between classes and exploring the city, the room that i stayed in, the international dorm of the college, became a harbor for sparse moments of loneliness. It was where I made late night phone calls, wrote long journal entries, practiced writing Chinese characters 100 times over, and took photos of the empty room.

Sometimes, I took my feelings and my camera out into the street. I did the same on the overnight train from Beijing to Xi’an.

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