There’s a saying among Old China hands: “Those who live here one year know everything; those who live here twenty know nothing.” So infinite are the nuances, they believe, so extreme the paradoxes, so elusive the truths, that no outsider could ever master them. And I agree–to a point. After all, Confucius himself said, “To know, is to know you know nothing.” But during my time here, three simple truths have emerged:
- Many things are not as they appear.
- Many things are exactly as they appear.
- The key is in knowing the difference.