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Published: December 19th 2010
Wow! How time flies, right? I can't believe it has been four months since I have been in China. So let's recap.
Last I remember writing, I was still trying to get used to everything and seemed to be moving along just fine. Now I'm starting to believe that you can't ever get used to anything here. Everything is always changing. And I say that particularly with the education system in mind. There was a point where I was really starting to feel settled. The kids and I were really groovin. I looked forward to seeing them. The kids at Guang Yu became my favorite. They would come into the classroom during my lunch break and hang out with me. One day, three boys came in with a chocolate surprise.
They said, "Here, this is for you."
"Oh, I love chocolate!"
The next week, the one on the right came in with four pumpkin candles, miniature size. I said, "Oh thank you. Why are you giving these to me?" I assumed it was a Thanksgiving gift since I had just received a gift from the twins in my previous class.
"Because, teacher. I love you."
Outside Guang Yu
Collecting doors of opportunity
Melt my heart. Every school has these gems. But I love them all. And the part that makes me angry is that because of how often things change without notice, I have not gone back to my normal schools since November. I miss my kids. I didn't get to say good-bye. It's like tearing a mother from her child. Except not. Because I'm not acting like a ravenous beast. Just a little bummed that that's how things work here. If there is anything to get used to, it's that.
So Thanksgiving was well spent with the teachers here. We had a very successful dinner. I made a green bean and red bell pepper vegetable medley and egg and tomato soup. The egg and tomato soup is quite popular in these parts. According to Isla, it was a successful first attempt. But maybe she was just being nice. We also got a birthday cake since we couldn't get anything with Thanksgiving on it. They gave us a flower candle that was supposed to play a tune upon lighting and then the petals were supposed to expand, but it didn't quite work on time, so I missed the picture. Entertaining
Other than teaching, just hanging out and taking in this experience is what I've been up to. I've had my bold moments, eating a moth's cocoon and trying frog legs. My Chinese is still slowly progressing...working on it. Haven't done any traveling. With one day a week, it's a bit hard to do, though I have become very lackadaisical, I will admit. As if not blogging isn't proof enough. However, that will end next month! I am going on a little Chinese adventure. I will visit Hainan, which I hear is the Hawaii of China. It is freezing in Benxi right now. We have had below zero temps a few times already and it's bound to get worse. It should get better by March. Hainan will be good. Then, I plan on going to Shanghai and exploring the New York City of Asia, as it has also been called. I find it ironic that I will visit both of these places but have not been to Hawaii or NYC. The whole idea of traveling has been boggling my mind lately. Back home, I remember thinking how amazing it would be to visit Beijing and Shanghai and all these
other places. Now it just seems like no big deal. Like going from Reno to San Francisco. Anyway, whatever I end up doing, I will have photos.
Christmas Eve will be spent in the same fashion as Thanksgiving, with Chinese company and (hopefully) good food. I'm hoping for a Mexican Christmas dinner in China. Maybe a little ski try-out Christmas Day. We'll see how that goes...
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