Traditional or Not Traditional: That is the Question.


Part 1: A bike ride around my host university, Southwest University for Nationalities, in Chengdu, Sichuan, China.

Wow, where do I pick up?? These preceding days have been just as jampacked and event filled as the “honeymoon” phase days presented themselves as. On this road of recovery, I have been traveling on it mainly by scooter for the most part. Being that the entire country travels by this means, a simple ride to class serves as quite an entertaining experience. You are liable to pass an entire family (including the dog), construction workers (with PVC pipes, siding, etc.), the local recyclists (with feet dangling off the side), or even one day pass me by as I have two friends on the back for a quick drop off moment (I obey the law, okay?). At any rate, the experience is one that every student here should have, being the driver or passenger.

Moving on, the temperature has been dropping by the minute it seems.  I went from not needing the air conditioner, to using an open-screened door, to closing the door altogether. I have quickly transitioned my attire from summer chique to winter couture. For the sake of not looking like a freshly discharged patient from the hospital all wrapped in ACE’s finest, I have purchased a couple pairs of blue and black striped socks to wear along with my handicapable shoe. Needless to say, I have made being injured look pretty fashionable.

Anywho, on a scholarly note, my Senior project in Chinese medicine is in full force and my circumstances allow for a quite interesting scenes for the final film. If you have forgotten, I sprained my wrist a few weeks ago. Well, I’m still recovering. I miss dancing so much it hurts, but what can you do? Visit the Traditional Chinese Medicine clinic at school, that’s what! Who would have known that amongst the annual reunion of the school’s 23472347 clubs, the TCM club holds its “tradition” by offering a free clinic for students to see a real life TCM doctor! Of course, my Sony handycam and I couldn’t pass this offer up. I awaited as the doctor treated the students before me in various ways (massage, acupuncture, simple consultation). Next up was yours truly. I feel pretty ecstatic that I answered 85% of the questions with my own basis of Chinese knowledge. We went through the line of questioning that your usual doctor’s visit would consist of: where are you uncomfortable, what happened, let me take a look; but, then that when he asks the camera guy (my friend) to take hold of me as he YANKS on my wrist to “rearrange” the bones. This man literally pulled my wrist back, forth, left, and right and by the end, left my mind going in all of those same directions. He followed this by notifying me of medicine that will be prepared for me to pick up 30 minutes later. I am still left a little dazed at this point, but I followed the doctor’s orders. I picked up a pretty hefty bag of what was said to be potentially tasty powder due to its scent, but taste is in the mouth of the swallower and that mess made dirt seem appetizing!! However, I’m a champ so I downed the four spoonfuls as the first of four doses of the day. Alright, this is fine and dandy, I feel like I’ve really achieved something here, excellent footage if anything. So, as the next couple of days played out, I began to feel a different feeling from within, beyond the previous lacking of range in motion. I held it together throughout this school week of preparing for finals and awaited the scheduled appointment with my Western bone doctor. I went and paid my usual 1100NT for two x-rays and a consultation (~40USD). He calls me in, and before he begin his piece, I showed him what happened prior to the appointment. I asked him if he believes in this practice and he answered me, “partially.” This is where I have finally set in motion that through personal experience, along with the beliefs of doctors practicing within minutes of these same TCM doctors, that there is a huge divide here and it is best to specialize my documentary on one or the other. So, after he saw the video and giggled a little, he proceeded to look at my x-ray and inform me that the former fracture that came from ice skating this past April is actually appearing as a nonunion with .3 cm gap. UGHHH, do I have my proactive demeanor to blame (as I’ve still been dancing here and there) or the game of tug-o-arm I played with the TCM doctor. So, I was advised to refrain from any strenous activity, working out, and DANCINGGGGG for the next few weeks until the bone can finally settle itself again. Alright, fine, I throw in the towel and give myself to stagnation for the next few weeks and hope that I can take the word of the Taiwanese/Western doctor at the least.

As far as school goes, final preparation week has come to fruition and I am ready to hit the books super hard this weekend and next week end this semester as strong as it started and proceeded. Next blog, I will be informing you all of last minute preparations for my week off between semesters which will be spent in Okinawa, Japan!!