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05

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QW 051512 “Core of My Onion”

It was an interesting conversation on Twitter between people I follow there. Here’s the quote:

T: Life is like an onion. You peel off layer after layer and then you find there is nothing in it.
L: … and then you realize that the layers actually were the onion.

Haven’t you had thought like this? Consider the things you’ve been committed for quite a long time. Haven’t you thought about fulfilling such commitments as just like an endless business of peeling an onion? There is this onion right in front of you, and there’s nothing else as far as you can see. You know full well that it was you, no one else, who picked up the onion to peel. Or there was nothing left for you to working on that onion. Whatever. Anyway you’ve convinced yourself that this is the right thing to do, and started peeling your onion. There’s one thing that keeps coming back to you; when, or even whether, this peeling job will finish. Sometimes you’d peel extremely carefully and attentively. Sometimes you’d be completely sick and tired of the whole business. Sometimes you’d be unsure about why you’re being engaged in this job. You see a growing pile of onion layers right before your eyes, but you cannot possibly see how you could regard or interpret this heap of those layers that you’ve produced.

It seems to me as just another analogue for my English learning. I’ve kept peeling this onion for more than three decades, but I’ll never know when to finish it. Which is perfectly okay because I’m determined to go on with English learning for the rest of my life. What hits me hard sometimes is that I’d feel as if I would never reach its core. There is NO core of the onion to begin with, but there is this me who’s eager to reach its core if there’s any and see some noticeable results or achievements. Well, as my twitter friend said, it’s just “you realize that the layers actually were the onion.” Then, peeling my onion itself is the results or achievements that could possibly be expected from my whole English learning life? Okay, that’s good enough. “English learning life is like an onion. You peel off layer after layer and then you find there is nothing in it. Those layers were actually an onion, your English learning life.”

(60 minutes / 400 words)

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Aya

Author:Aya
English learner

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