A Lost Generation: Where is My City?

They are called the post 80s.They were once treated as the Beat Generation. Criticism, doubts and worries flowed upon them. And right now they shared the same name “dwelling narrowness. “

11 Miles away from Zhongguancun, with only 2,700 local residents while more than 37,000 university graduates gathering, Tangjialin is treated as a typical miniature of the living condition of the young generation.These young men come from all over China to Beijing,struggling to realize their dreams while suffering an impoverished and undignified life.

Drifting in a prospective city, away from family and friends, they dive into the concrete jungle, forge ahead in the indifferent environment while having nobody to listen to and to share the ups and downs in their life. Loneliness, stares these youngsters, silently.

As this situation deteriorating,it will eventually jeopardize their mental health,many of them will falling into a state called Mentally Homeless. Tragedies happened, in 2008 a girl who lived in Xiaoyuehe, a populated area in Beijing for university graduates, jumped in the river and ended her young life. Her dream and all her beautiful wishes vanished in the cold winter.

You can’t bargain with the city. For some young men, dream is not more capital or driving force but a unrealistic burden. New generation keep high aspiration and they attempt to encounter more opportunity and achieve their life goal in the first-tier cities.

But the fact is not always that optimistic. When they turn to internet for spiritual comfort, when struggle for existence has become the top priority, when complaining about the city has become a daily routine, how can you say you can still afford your dream in the concrete jungle?

Weary youngsters crawl to the life that they eager to possess in capital with the heavy load that they can barely burden. For the pride it’ll bring to their family of staying in a metropolitan city and for the virtual shining future, they are actually tortured by the cruel and cold reality. But not all suffering will bring success in turn.

To the young dreamers who prefer excitement than stability, who love to be outstanding than enjoying a comfortable life, it’s actually a venture investment of keeping holding on to their expectation. They are blinded by the hyped elitism and manipulated by a childish naïve hope.

When it comes to their 30th ,maybe someday many of them will suddenly wake up and found all the years struggling in the first-tier cities hasn’t really benefit them that much and the metropolitan gold diggers are not that young ambitious any more.

As a workaholic, knowing that it’s not worthy to sacrifice the fun in life for chasing a bright career is a turning point which will lead to happiness. What we need is not only the growth in salary and working experience but also the growth of life.

As a dreamer, knowing that going back to a second-tier city doesn’t mean that you admit you’re a loser, it could also bring you a brand new and unexpected opportunity.

In the movie Chris Gardner told his son:“You got a dream, you gotta protect it.” But the truth is the price it takes to protect our dreams is way off our imagination, overload work, weakening health, overcrowded living condition.

There is no fairytale in real life. The principle of survival is so cruel that vulnerable groups will suffer in the progress of the whole nation. We want to see a nation full of dream and energy but not full of unrealistic hope and wild ambition.

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