夏笛: Xià dí: Summer flute
I have had eight or so Chinese teachers in the time I have been studying this insane language. Each time I begin a class with a new teacher, the first day consists of everyone going around the circle sharing their English name and then their Chinese name. And each time, I have to say “Wo mei you zhongwen de mingzi” or “I don’t have a Chinese name.” The professor would scrunch up their face, looking puzzled. BUT HOW?! They must wonder. They would throw their hands up in the air and say, “Not anymore! You shall have a Chinese name! I shall give you your Chinese name!”
The first few professors made these exclamations but then never followed through. I went from Elementary I to II, then skipped up to Intermediate, and finished at Advanced II Chinese. But still no Chinese name. That means six circles, six confused looks of how no Chinese name, and six failed attempts at giving me a name.
Well, rather, five. My Advanced I Chinese teacher came into class half way through the semester. He had our third chapter tests in his hands, and a rather disappointed look on his face. He marched up to my desk, and handed me my test back as he triumphantly told me that he had finally thought of a name for me. “Wen xia,” he said. I asked him what on Earth that meant. And as I looked down and saw the nice, big, fact 41% circled in red pen on the top of my graded chapter test, he said, “It means the glow of knowledge.”
Naturally, I laughed out loud, pointed at my test, and said to the professor, “Wen xia? The GLOW OF KNOWLEDGE?! Laoshi, did you see what you gave me on this test? Are you being sarcastic or something?”
So that name didn’t stick.
But this most recent teacher finally came through. The usual routine happened where everyone else in the class said their English and Chinese names. And I still didn’t have one. However, the next lesson Tracy came in with several options, and we finally settled on Xia (a common family name, and the family name always goes first in Chinese names) and then Di (which means flute as she knew I had played instruments in the past.) So now, when I have a new teacher, I will be able to introduce myself as Xia Di.
After finding out my name, it obviously was necessary to look up if there are any famous people named “Xia Di” that show up on Google Images. So today, my friends, I leave you with some images of other fellow Xia Dis. Enjoy.