Well, nothing of terribly note lately. I've put up some new pictures and even a quick video of my students singing over on YouTube. Nothing spectacular. The verdict is in on the new cat's name, it's MarMao. A combination of spanish and chinese that means Sea Cat. Because his eyes are two different colors... not that the sea is ever blue around here. Oh well. I can't wait to get a charger for my camera so I can start taking my own pictures. Most of the latest ones have been from Michelle's camera. I'll get it sorted out soon enough I suppose. Let's see... using my birthday money I made two important purchases here.. a cell phone, and intergral part of the social and job scene here, and a bike. Since the purchuse of my new bike I have already been out almost every night biking alongside the road that runs by the sea. It's called Lovers Rd. It's very beautiful because at night you can barely see the things floating and the buildings look nice because they're all lit up. Oh and it's cool. Always a plus. I looked at the weather today in Tallahassee, 73 I think it said. Must be nice. Of course that could have been at 7:15am. hehe. My online travel writing course didn't go as well as I hoped. It was full of a bunch of older pompous ass types who had no room for a young unexperienced person as myself. I'm starting to think that all foriegners that travel must be assholes. Does that mean I'm fated to become one as well? One of those people that's always like... "Oh well in China...." or "Did I tell you about the time in China when..." I promise that I will do my best when/if I come back :) And speaking of future plans, I still don't have any. No great revelations have come upon me as to what to do with my future. However having a birthday is rather sobering and I realize that I can't just flit about forever with no idea of what to do next. I'm sure one day I'll regret it.
Other weird thoughts: Sometimes when I'm walking down the street and people AREN'T staring at me like I have three heads, I'm starting to forget that I'm not like everyone else. I mean I dont conciously walk around thinking about how white and fat I am right? Pretty soon I'll be eating like them and talking more like them... I feel like a duck that was raised with chickens or something... Doesn't know that it's different. Maybe if you stay somewhere long enough it happens to people as well...
Also on one of my bike rides I looked up and was finally able to see the sky. It dawned on me for the first time that the stars and constellations were different. It's little things that get me.
And chinese lessons are going great! I'm learning from many different sources and I'm unashamably practicing with everyone I can! Michelle is helping me with practical things, and my school is offering a basic course which is going for phonics and reading pinyin. I also solict the help of random strangers that feel brave enough to try and talk english to me. Which is scarily common. If i'm riding on the bus, at least once a week someone strikes up a conversation in English. It's not long before they're asking me what I think of China, the food, or if I can speak Chinese, which in turn gives me a chance to say,
"Wo jiao Brandy. (Bai-lan-di is my chinese name, which means, brandy. haha) Wo shi mei guo ren. Wo shi lao shi. Wo xihaun zhong guo. Wo tan gita. Wo suo de bu hao"
I am Brandy, I am an American. I am a Teacher. I like China. I play guitar. I don't speak well.
I can also say little things like misc fruits and vegetables, here there, this that, today tommorrow yesterday, and a few colors. It's also getting easier to recognize some of the characters that I see ALL the time. But basically I'm still in the baby step phase. But it sure is a lot of fun. I dont think I'll be writing or reading anytime soon, but in 3 months I hope to be wow-ing people with my speaking skills.
Ok, time to hit the cheap-o dumpling shop for a late dinner. Don't forget, I LOVE emails and comments. Send some!! :)