When I was very young, maybe four or five years old, and I first heard that there was such a place as China, I asked my parents where that is. "Well," I was told, "if you dug a hole all the way through the earth and came out the other side, you'd be in China." This was very interesting to me. I figured, if they live on the bottom of the earth, they must walk upside-down.
This was something I had to see for myself, so I dragged a shovel out to my mother's garden and set about digging a hole to China.
I made it perhaps a foot down, then I hit a rock and couldn't dig any further. I reckoned I'd picked the wrong spot to dig, so I moved a few feet over and tried again.
It must've been a bad day for me, because once again I hit an obstruction long before I got to China, so I gave up... but I never lost the desire to see the land where the people are all upside-down.
Just a few months ago, through a friend of a friend I received an opportunity to come and teach at Dongbei University of Finance and Economics, in Dalian, China. This was a wonderful opportunity, and of course I crawled through that hole as quickly as I could.