Alright, here is the thing, I admit I don’t know the first thing about cars, and I used to think that I don’t give a damn about it, since the roads between cars and I don’t seem to align. But when I get here, not only once did I regret that I should have learned driving before I came. So people think that I am stupid because I don’t know cars. Whenever I got a ride from a friend of mine, he would ask me for the money to pay his gas. Of course, at first I thought gas must be something expensive, since he always mentioned that he has to pay his gas and blah blah blah. So I was willing to pay him like $10 for his gas each time, even though I only got a ride within the city to do groceries. But I am not stupid, and let’s do the math here: actually you can run about 20 miles per gallon, and the gas price here is around $2.5 per gallon; so basically a distance of 120 miles (from Indianapolis to Cincinnati) would cost $13 for gas. Since a person’s weight can be ignored compared with the car weight, so it doesn’t matter if it’s two or one on the car. So I paid $10 for each run, and it’s like I go to some grocery shops near Indianapolis all the way from Cincinnati. You think I am nuts?! My point is it’s not a big deal that I buy you lunch or pay you money if I owe you that favor, but generally it’s like he thinks I am dumb and I can easily be taken advantage of. So when I find things out my way, I would think he is a mean and stingy person that is worth nothing but my ignorance and disdain. My philosophy is that if you don’t help people in need, then you are never their friend. It is true that there are nasty people all around the world no matter what race they are, what color their skin is. I only feel ashamed and disappointed at this point.
Aside from the fact that I am pissed by some of those stupid stingy jerks, I am generally happy here. I am sorry, Jerry, I do feel better here. Things I learned in China make myself feel proud here. As I knew I would have this in my life, I was expecting my school days would come sooner, so that I can do things I couldn’t do or I did not well when I was studying for my MS in China. Yan is right: the harder you study, the more you will gain. I never regret that I come all the way to Cincinnati for my PhD, and I think I will cherish and respect my decision more when time goes by.