Travel in Spring

After living in a place or staying in a room for a long time, I want to go out to travel. Since 1983, I have been to more than 10 countries in the world and almost all places in China. It can be said that I can feel and experience the rapid changes of the times each time I go out. When I went to the United States for the first time in 1988, to save money, I wore my hair long. At that time, there was no private car, highway, or high-speed train in China. Times have passed and circumstances have changed now. Our country has entered the age of digitization and intelligence. The biggest change is that smartphones have become popular. Last night, I watched TV. I did not have to use the switch or walk over. I just sat on the comfortable sofa I specially bought and called “Xiaoai”. A friendly voice said: “I’m here. What can I do for you? Please tell me.” I said: “Turn on the TV.” I just heard the invisible smart girl reply: “OK.” The TV was turned on automatically. However, a QR code appeared on the TV and “4 yuan” was next to it. I opened the QR code on my mobile phone and paid 4 yuan with WeChat. As a result, a blockbuster without any ad started immediately. When it ended, as long as I called “Xiaoai”, it would answer: “Yes! I’m here.” I said: “Turn off the TV.” A pleasant voice answered “OK”. The TV was automatically turned off.

My mobile phone rang at 7:30 this morning. After getting up and having breakfast, I hailed a taxi with Didi, a mobile app. As long as I enter the destination, the license plate number, phone number of the driver, and prices of different vehicles I can choose from will appear on my mobile phone immediately. The Didi taxi booked by me arrived in just 2 minutes and took me to the railway station. I got out of the car. The fee for Didi was automatically deducted from my mobile phone. When I went through security at the railway station, I did not have a ticket, but I did not have to worry. As long as I put my ID card in the designated position, the security gate will open automatically. The premise is that you have booked a ticket. Because I needed to reimburse the ticket, I walked to a row of machines and printed the ticket automatically with my ID card. I was particularly moved by the following incident. When we arrived at the Beijing West Railway Station, the queuing passengers besieged the entrance. When I worried that I would be late because I had to wait in line for a long time, I saw the sign “Passage for the Elderly” by accident, but there were many people next to it. I asked the staff to come and showed my ID card. The staff shouted immediately: “Please keep away from the Passage for the Elderly.” I did not expect that many people in front of me would make way for me immediately so that I could pass smoothly. I felt very warm.

In conclusion, undoubtedly, I could travel around China with a mobile phone. Even vegetable vendors use QR codes. What era do you think we are in? This may be the third stage of modernization -- the digital information era. We can enjoy the convenience. Some friends don’t understand why I like to take the bullet train. There are charging sockets under the seats and free meals on the bullet train. All of them constitute my colorful and happy life.

The author Geleg is the first Doctor of Anthropology cultivated by the People’s Republic of China, the first Tibetan to obtain a PhD degree, and a Tibetologist famous around the world. He grew up in boarding schools. When talking about the disinformation about boarding schools in Xizang in the world, he said that this was just an attempt to smear through public opinion in the current superpower games and it was not a fact. On the contrary, the boarding school system in Xizang meets the needs of people in Xizang and really shows the protection of human rights.