Ni Hao, Jia Kai!
Hopefully this will be an adequate recollection and re-creation of ...
arrival/preliminary china info
now that i'm in china and (kind of) getting settled, i figured it's about time to write up just a few of the experiences i've had so far (mom, don't freak out!)
flight: i will never fly anything but korean air ever again. the flight attendants were so great and i swear every one of them was gorgeous, and there was SO much legroom, i couldn't believe it. i don't know how i ever survived that plane ride on united to sydney. this 12 hour flight went by quite quickly (suprisingly), it was so nice. also, the warm towels were wonderful PLUS-just one more reason for me to love koreans-this adorable little old korean man next to me noticed i was reading while the plane was simulating nighttime and reached in front of me in an attempt to turn on my light, then tried his, then the guy's next to him (the window seat), finally finding the right one pointed at me. so awesome.
though our flight was delayed out of LAX about an hour, we still made it to seoul with plenty of time, then flew to beijing, all of my bags arrived safely, and after some waiting at the airport (after all, there were around 75 of us needing to be shuttled to the hotel), we got on buses and arrived at our hotel.
i don't want to go into too much ancillary detail about every single thing, but let me just point out a few things already great about china: a 1.5L bottle of water costs about 50 cents, as does a liter of very tasty beer, you risk your life every time you try and cross even the very smallest of streets, and it's horribly muggy and hot and humid during the day. i'm going to have to get used to being slimy and sweaty for the next few months. (side note: today, after thinking this man wasn't going to stop for a group of us, he definitely didn't, and instead just kept on driving his van, his head stuck out of the window with a huge grin plastered on his face. twas great :D) luckily for us, apparently it was 40 degrees celsius last week in beijing, so thankfully it's hovering around 30 here so far.
we had some training/lectures today in preparation for our first day of teaching tomorrow (good god), and let me tell you how nervous and clammy i will be tomorrow before that class period. i was supposed to team teach with this guy richard before our schedules were changed, and now i am on my own with a class full of chinese college students. apparently their english is supposed to be really good if they're so serious about studying english that they've continued for this long, but still--i'm no qualified teacher. on a good note, i have chinese class tomorrow, and i'm in the same class as this girl molly who i would venture to say i'm friends with (it's a bit early now to say that, but still), so that should be good. everyone in the program is very nice and friendly, which is very nice. we'll see who i become closer to by the time we get to shenzhen and after :D i'm very excited and hopeful everything works out all right, but i need to make sure i get a good grasp of teaching and such when i'll be monitored and observed towards the end of our time in beijing. hopefully i do well enough to get my location preference and so i'll be near my friends!
i'm sure there's more but i can't think of too much now; i need to finish getting my lesson together and then probably sleep. i only slept 6ish hours last night and my alarm didn't go off on my watch and thus i had to hurriedly rushed to get ready in 15 mins this morn.
take care of the u.s. for me everyone.