Will Things Ever Get Better? – A Discussion between Chen Jiaying and Xiang Jing

Xiang Jing x Chen Jiaying:

Xiang Jing: Your child is about ten now?
Chen Jiaying: Nine.

Xiang: Did you have any children before this one?
Chen: No, this is my first child.

Xiang: In The Irreducible Eidos, I read that you mentioned never hoped to live a normal life.
Chen: Right. I never made such plan. Life is not about making specific choices, but about what you encounter.

Xiang: Having a child must have brought great changes.
Chen: Extremely great changes…

Xiang: Greater than those brought by marriage.
Chen: Much greater. This is especially the case nowadays. In the past, marriage was like a marriage between two families. Now it is just two individuals, which doesn’t seem to lead to great changes.
Xiang: A child is really concrete. It is all of reality.
Chen: In the past, when I traveled, I would seek out the places with the fewest people. Now I go to the places with the most people. One time I actually said that, and my friends laughed at me.

Xiang: But even with a child in tow, you’re still willing to keep traveling everywhere?
Chen: I still run around. I like traveling, so now I just bring her along. It’s good for kids to get around. My daughter doesn’t really like to study; she likes to run around.

Xiang: With you taking her all over the place, of course she won’t like to study.
Chen: It makes her like it even less, that’s true. Studying is quite important, possibly, but it really depends on your nature. You don’t necessarily have to study. For this year’s summer holiday, I am going to take the family to see France. We’ll travel more in China in the future. She’s a child now, but when most kids reach their teens, they don’t like to run around with their parents anymore. Most people in my age