Charles: he influences us with action

Updated: 2016-05-01 14:41

By Wang Fangfang(

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Charles: he influences us with action

Picture of Charles.[Photo provided to

Lei Feng, a household name, is quite familiar to most of us in China; his spirit transcends regions, genders, and nationalities. A foreign Lei Feng will be introduced here.

Lei Feng was a model soldier of the People’s Liberation Army. He was born in a poor peasant family in Hunan province and became an orphan at age seven. He was raised under the wing of the communist party of China (CPC). He became a member of CPC and died at the age of 22. While he was assisting a truck to back up he was killed. A hero's life historically is somewhat short, like a flash in the pan, yet worthwhile. He left a great deal of spiritual wealth for us. The founder of the People’s Republic of China Chairman Mao called on the whole nation to follow the example of comrade Lei Feng .

Many foreigners have felt his actions by hearing of his life. One of the foreign teachers in my university shares some traits with Lei Feng. His name is Charles. He comes from California in the US. This is his first time to Zhengzhou as well as to China; he has been here nearly a year now. He is very learned, having three doctoral degrees, and he has won admiration and respect from faculty as much as from students. Now he teaches the junior year English major students in Zhengzhou Normal University. He is humorous, kindhearted, well-rounded and thought provoking -- popular among the students due to those characteristics that resemble Lei Feng’s.

Even though I have been studying English for more than ten years, it seems that I cannot communicate well with foreigners. When i shared my problems with him he offered me a series of valuable and practical suggestions for learning the different aspects of English. As to listening, I need to listen to English radio, try to explain what I hear on the news and watch good movies without subtitles. For speaking I am supposed to speak English with my friends and so forth. I followed his advice, and, according to my friends, improved. I won awards in an English speaking contest thanks to his guidance. He is a beacon of light instructing and enlightening me on my bright journey.

The other day, I got a call from my friend Ella. She asked me to accompany her to see Charles for advice in regards to an English interview. He explained to us that as a candidate for a master’s degree, we should put ourselves in the interviewers' shoes, and think about what kind of applicants they are willing to recruit and what contributions they anticipate from the applicant in regards to the local society and the world in general. Both Ella and I owe him a great deal of gratitude.

Not only does he help others in their studies but he also gives directions in daily life. He absolutely qualifies to be labeled as a foreign Lei Feng!!! He discusses various serious issues with us students such as our health, and others arising from our daily lives. When it comes to health, he loves exercising and persists in it in pleasantly warm spring, annoyingly hot summer, cheerfully cozy autumn, and bitterly cold winter. Students who get up early in the morning have an opportunity to see him running around the campus. He said, “Sport and exercise offers one a sense of refreshment.” “Having good health tops everything.” “Without having good health, life becomes more difficult.”

He influences us with action. Spurred by profound thought, more and more students are seen running in the morning. When it comes to life, his richness in experiences in different parts of the world allows him to have a deeper interpretation and sophisticated outlook. He faced death on five different occasions, in each of which he believed that logically he should have died. In fact one of the last incidents occurred here in Zhengzhou when he came very close to death in a car accident. He said, “Life is so short for most of us and shorter for others.” “We can’t expect and predict how we will go but we can increase or decrease our chances of living depending on where we live.” “Every day is a new day and today is a new day. Thus, we must live every moment of today to the fullest.” Admittedly, life is very simple and it is us that make it more complex because we like to create these twists and turns full of ups and downs. However, this process makes each of our lives unique and special.

His powerful words influence me deeply. There was once a time I was stuck in a situation where I had no clue how to cope with stage fear and lacked confidence. Charles detailed my situation deeply and carefully. He told me it was a shadow of a bad experience I was carrying along with me that dispirited and obstructed me. His advice was for me to think and act wisely and with practice to make the situation perfect. Since then I grab every opportunity to expose myself in any event that allows me to practice my speaking in front of an audience.

He colored my decisions for a better future and I gradually moved out of the dark and gloomy days shrouded by my failure in postgraduate examinations. Instead, I plucked up my courage to confront the challenges bravely and persistently. I know that failure is the mother of success and I need to stick to my dream and fight for it.

Charles, like Lei Feng before him, makes us stride in the right direction through his devoted and noble assistance, and by constantly injecting positive energy into our friendship. We the students who have been touched by his knowledge, experience and good deeds, owe Charles our gratitude and our success in life.