Last week, as I’m sure Erin told y’all, I did something that is all too common for expats living in China: the Hong Kong visa run. Before I describe the run itself, let me give y’all some back story about my school.
Archive for May, 2012
Sorry for the Debbie Downer post last week, and thank you to everyone for cheering me up! This week was actually much better. I realized that I have no choice but to spend a fair amount of time by myself for the time being (even more so now that my boss is finally returning to take back over Elephant class), but there are better and worse ways to spend that time. Not exactly rocket science, but being mopey motivated me to step my Chinese learning game up. So this week has been a lot of working and studying and I’ve felt really good about it. I learned a lot of new words (最近我学习非常忙- Lee, you can let me know if that’s correct ) and hung out outside and in coffee shops instead of in my apartment by myself. I still wish I had girlfriends to hang with but studying in the day and going out with friends at night isn’t a bad way to pass the days. And there is another holiday coming up in about a month, so Kevin and I are talking about coordinating our days off and trying to get away for 4 or 5 days, preferably to someplace tropical. Or at least a place with sunshine. This summer in Chengdu is going to be a very different summer than any other one I’ve had. I’ve never lived in a big city with a gray sky where you can’t really go out and play. We’re really hoping to get at least one little summer getaway onto the schedule!
Ugh, this week has been a bit rough. For the first time since we arrived I have been feeling pretty homesick. It’s the beginning of summer and all my friends are getting ready for fun in the sun. I can’t even remember the last time I saw the sun. Many of my friends are graduating and I wish I was in Knoxville to see them walk. I also can’t believe it’s been a year since I graduated and I miss college. Significant things are going on with my family as well that I wish I was around for. And my brother is coming home this month, and it has been over a year since I have seen him. I’m only writing this post because this is also a part of the expat experience and it’s just as real as all the exciting times. Just know that I miss you all at home!
I think I’ve reached a bit of a plateau in excitement about our year in China. I was warned about this in my TEFL class, and I remember when my brother hit this point when he was teaching in Peru. When you first arrive everything is novel and exciting. The months before you leave you feel nostalgic about your experience and want to hold onto everything. But there are a few months in the middle where you’re used to everything and working just feels like a job and day in and day out it feels like regular life.. except you are on the other side of the world from the comforts of home and the people you love. Not to complain, I really like China. But sometimes in between waking up and going to sleep early I wish I could call up a friend or have lunch with a family member, or eat a cheeseburger without traveling an hour on the bus. Or have some adventure. I’d think less about being away from home if I was actually traveling. But alas, that can’t always be the case. At some point we have to make some money to fund that travel, and honestly we have found a good situation for that. It’s just been dragging a bit lately..
Hello! I think I mentioned last week that I was going to be picking up extra shifts AND working Saturday this week, so it has been pretty hectic. Luckily, I had Sunday, Monday and Tuesday off so I’ve been able to relax and get caught up the last couple of days. I have been able to chat with so many people I love which could not have come at a better time because I had been feeling a bit down and lonely lately. A side effect of Kevin and my opposing schedules is that when I’m home and ready to hang out he’s at work, leaving me with a lot of time by myself. Getting to skype with friends and family back home is amazing and always makes me feel so much more connected with the people I love.