Thursday, September 28, 2006

My Chinese Name

Today was a much needed good day. It's been raining non-stop for the past day, and when you have to walk everywhere this can be a little depressing and pretty much nasty.

Every Thursday night one of the foreign teachers has to attend "English Corner" which is supposedly a place where students can come and speak English , but essentially what happens is everyone speaks Chinese and surrounds the foreign teacher and asks him the same questions for two hours straight. Tonight was my first time to go, so I was asked to give an introduction. I began by telling them about myself and then opened the floor to questions. Shortly into the questions, a girl asked if I had a girlfriend, which was shortly followed by the usual "Do you want a Chinese one?" I laughed, and then my good friend Christina (who had sung for us last week and confessed that she secretly wants to marry a foreigner) asked me to tell all one hundred of the present students about my love life. I told them it was pretty much non-existent and moved on to more equally embarrassing questions. Afterwards Christina found me and told me that my new hair cut made me look very handsome and that I am much thinner now. She then inquired as to if I had a brother and if she could have a picture. I told her I would love to give her a picture and that my brother loves Chinese girls. (sorry Dustin).

After all this we went for a late dinner to my favorite restaurant which we call Happy Guy's. We walked in and ordered some food. Me and Happy Guy and the rest of the Happy family are becoming good friends. While we were waiting, Happy Wife who we've named Stella offered us some coffee which was glorious even though it was instant. It's really special because coffee's pretty expensive here and Happy Guy isn't exactly Rich Guy. I think he was having a family reunion or something because by the end of the meal it was us three foreigners, Stella, Happy Guy and his brother and sister sitting around talking and by talking I mean stumbling through broken English and even worse Chinese. It was a blast though. By the end Happy Guy inducted us into his family lol. His real name is Zhang Hai Long. His family name is Zhang and then his personal name means Dragon of the Sea. I told him I wanted to be Shan Long (Dragon of the Mountain) and he laughed and said "Ok, you Zhang Shan Long." It was great and much needed after a couple of nasty days outside. I'm learning more and more about community and how important it is to have those little glimpses of community in a place where you can feel so disconnected. I don't think life in America is much different in this respect either. Things like talking to a waitress or cashier that you normally wouldn't, gives a little bit of connection and community in a place that's desperately lacking it.

Tomorrow me and some Brothers and Angelynn are going to Shanghai and Hangzhou for October Holiday for a week. We have a 17 hour bus ride to look forward to which should be great. I'm really excited about it all. The Brothers are some real cool guys and we're staying with Jakie's brother who is a professional chef in Shanghai. It's pretty much gonna be amazing. If any of you have seen Mission Impossible 3, the last scenes are in Shanghai and we are going to be going for a day to the village at the very end of the movie.

Be Remembering my new friends that I met eating rice the other day (I call them the Rice boys). We've been hanging out a lot and they're really great guys, I like em a lot and really hope that our relationship continues to Grow. Also, be Talking about my friend Grease (he spells it Grace but calls himself Grease, don't ask me...) Me and him are becoming good friends. We played ping pong today for a while, the guys a stud. I met a guy named Sean tonight that I felt like I Connected with so keep Remembering him too.

My backs feeling a lot better, but keep it in Mind. It still hurts some but not near as bad so I'm pretty stinkin Grateful for that.


Blogger Coleman Yoakum said...

Glad to hear you are feeling better buddy. Hope all is well on that side of the ocean, and I hope to hear from you soon.


8:57 AM  

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