The Pursuit of Happiness — I found it in Chengdu

Authors: Joachim Kim Kässmodel (China Daily)


I live in Chengdu, a poetic place that hosts foodies and creative minds.
Chengdu is a city with a population of over 14 million, and its airport is among one of the 30 busiest airports in the world. More than 260 Fortune 500 companies have established branches in the city and it was named China's 4th-most livable city and the 2nd luxuries market after Shanghai by WWD. This is where I currently live.
I am a German who speaks six languages and well-travelled. In fact, I cycled from Europe to China, following a route along the ancient Silk Road and traveling more than 25,000 km across 27 countries, only stopping because of an accident that put me in a hospital for over a month. Perhaps one day I might write a book to recapture my adventurous days during my cycling tour, but today, I'd like to share another kind of adventure, one that I embarked on by believing in one's heart.
To begin, I have to start from the night more than 3 years ago. I was temporarily living in Chengdu at the time after my accident. Just by pure chance, I decided to go to a popular local bar where many foreigners frequently go. It was a night like many others, crowded bar, with people squeezing each other. The band was playing, and the music was blasting. As I was scanning the room, there she was, a petite figure wrapped around in a silky green dress, with deep V shaped open back. Her long hair fell naturally on her back, thick and wavy. Her eyes are looking at the crowd with thoughtful expression. She looked beautiful, sophisticated and exquisite...
I couldn't contain my curiosity, as I wanted to get to know her, and I wanted to hear her stories. After introducing myself and a couple of drinks later, I found out that she was visiting town. Although a native from Chengdu, she had been living and working in New York for more than 15 years. Her English was perfect, and her posture elegant. She was witty, and polite. By the end of the night, we exchanged numbers and agreed to meet again for coffee, and before departing, I wrote down my personal web address so that she could check out my world tour on
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