Middle school teacher finds adventure and romance after leaving it all behind

Source:Global Times Published: 2017/9/7 18:43:39

Woman leaves it all behind for adventure and romance

Gu Shaoqiang (right) and her husband Yu Fu pose for a picture at their inn in Sichuan Province. Photo: IC

"The world is so big and I want to have a look around."

When Chinese netizens read this line in the resignation letter that middle school teacher Gu Shaoqiang wrote her school, their hearts went out to her for having the courage to leave her normal life behind to hit the open road. The letter soon went viral on the Chinese Internet.

After working in the same school in Central China's Henan Province for 11 years, Gu resigned in April 2015 to travel around the nation. After years of traveling, she settled down in a small town in Sichuan Province, got married, had a baby and published a book about her travels. Currently, she and her husband Yu Fu manage an inn, but still find time to travel during the off season when tourists are few and far between.

Since Gu left the city she had lived in for 35 years, she has traveled across China, visiting Dali in Southwest China's Yunnan Province to Chongqing Municipality, Hangzhou in East China's Zhejiang Province, Harbin in Northeast China's Heilongjiang Province and Luoyang in Central China's Henan Province.

Gu met the man who would become her husband during a trip to Dali in 2015. Yu was also visiting the city at the time, and the two agreed to meet up again in an ancient village near Chengdu, Sichuan Province after  half a year. If they both showed up at the appointed time, they would give a shot at starting a relationship. 

Although Gu was late to their planned meeting, she discovered that Yu had decided to wait for her.

Now, the two have settled down in this village. During the busy tourism season, the inn may be full of people, but during the off season, when not a single customer may be seen for several days, the couple go on hikes or drive the 20 kilometers needed to catch a movie. 

"Actually, I don't think her life is all that great. But I have to admit, there are few people who would be brave enough to walk away from their boring lives to go traveling. Best wishes to her," netizen Cat-on-a-couch79 posted on Sina Weibo.

While working hard to create a better life for their families and to contribute to the nation was a major ideal for those born in the 1950s and 1960s in China, today's younger generations have begun to care more about personal values and dreams than materialistic concerns.

However, new beliefs aside, few Chinese today are willing to walk away from their stressful, yet stable, jobs to pursue fantastic and not very realistic dreams. 

"It was not courage that led to my resignation, but a desire to be free. Of course I don't ask for much," Gu said in an interview with the Guangzhou-based Xinkuaibao newspaper.

"So those who envy me, if you still want a big house, brand cars, fancy clothes and good food, do not envy me anymore," she said.

Newspaper headline: Hitting the open road


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