Today was a good day.
I didn't go to my afternoon class - instead I stayed home and did my professor things like submit grades online, reply to student's online journals, and read student's observation responses.
(have I mentioned I like my job? :) )
Some other things I like today...
Mu Shu the King of all Kitties...I am thoroughly obsessed with this little cuddle bug...
I peeked through the pajama section of Walmart since Winter is coming and I have no heat - I might need to buy this for entertainment value, "Do You Have Any Needs?" ...
Honey Baked Lotus Root. I was gifted a bag of lotus root after Sunday's BBQ and had no idea what to do with it. Not wanting it to go to waste, I googled "lotus root recipes" and found this one:
Mix 1/3 cup honey and some grated ginger in a bowl, pour over 2 sliced lotus root. Bake for 15 minutes - rotating lotus slices half way through - wallah! YUM...
Wednesday night dinners. Every Wednesday me and some friend bike out to no-mans-land (one hour away) for our night class. 6:30 - 9pm "Chi.na Survey" taught in Chin.ese. It is Zhejiang Universityy's biggest campus (25,000 students at this one campus alone) and thus has tons of awesome street food, restaurants, and shops nearby catering to the students. We 3 meet for dinner before class each Wed. and this is quickly becoming one of my fave routines.
Tonight we had pizza...
In the beginning of class I sought out the other foreign student in the ed. department. He is the only other one - a dude from New Jersey doing his Master's in Adult Ed. He seems like a great guy and is very positive, so I wanted to pick his brain and have some of his positivity and motivation rub off on me.
During the first break in class (class is so long there are 2 breaks), we went for a little walk around the courtyard and I bemoaned my situation of hatred for class. I told him that I think he is being successful at this and I am not and asked him to give me some of his, "deal with Chi.na with a smile" pixie dust.
He looked me in the face and said, "What are you afraid of?"
I was like, HUH? I had never thought of it like this before, because in my mind I am not afraid of anything.
But suddenly a lot made sense to me. I'm afraid of being nitpicked for being different. I'm afraid of being in the way because I don't want special treatment - but need it. I'm afraid of my Chine.se not being good enough.
He told me that, "you have to make it fun." Which is exactly the opposite of what I've done - I've made it a living hell for myself by hiding in the back hoping no one sees me (ya right).
I was so thankful for our chat. I really took what he said to heart. Nothing he said was monumentally amazing, but I consider the source. Many of my friends at school have papers in English and classmates who help them. I do not.
But I do have a million resources. There are a dozen people related to school who are in positions that can help me understand, help me do my work, and help me be successful. But instead of tapping into my amazing resources, I have been avoiding - what I always do.
Our Wednesday professor rotates each week and this week's teacher was my head teacher from last Fall (who I was/am obsessed with). After class we had a chat and he asked me how things are going and expressed that I could seek him out if I ever need anything. And you know what? I'm going to do just that.
So while I don't feel happy-go-lucky about this whole school in Ch.ina thing (and probably never will), I do feel stabalized and generally positive again. Just gotta go to class next week. I have a good ally and role model in that classmate. Thank goodness no man is an island (or however that goes).
SO...changing topic...wanna see a video from my 2 hour commute to LinAn last week for a student observation? I thought the mountains outside the city were so pretty that I videotaped them, I was thinking that I really wanted my grandparents to see the views!
So here it is...random views from a bus...
walk slow. xoxo.