The typhoon didn’t show up; it rained and thunder rolled through the sky with deafening roars, but no extreme weather, no extreme wind… I have to admit I’m a bit disappointed, it would’ve been cool to see some action!
On Thursday I had my first, and only of this week, lesson! Year six English reading and writing.
I entered the class room, which was the students home room, and cheerfully said: “good morning class!”. To my surprise I got a reply and not just any, the students replied in choir: “good morning teacher!”
It was great! I tried to get the kids in Nederland to do this as well and of course failed miserably!
Since the lessons are only forty minutes time flew by and I only had time for introductions and such.
Something else that is really great is the bell here in school. It’s not your usual annoying ring ring sound, no! It’s classical music that plays for two minutes! The only real downside to this method of signalling for the hours is that the Marseillaise (the French anthem), which is one of the “bells”, is constantly stuck in my head.
This morning before class I moved house with the help of Andy and Osmond. I’m very happy to have my own apartment and I’m going to try to make it a bit more mine. I’m also thinking of doing a little house-warming with my colleagues, but we’ll see how that plays out.
First I have to get some cleaning materials and sheets.
My front door is the nicest of my building, I’m convinced, but it gives me great trouble opening it, it takes me at least five minutes of fiddling with the keys before it finally gives in…
I truly thought my apartment was perfect (except for my beautiful door that doesn’t let me the moment I show it my keys) until we came home that evening and I saw a huge cockroach on my table! So I have a great apartment with cockroaches… yuk!
On Friday I never have lessons, so this Friday I spent most of my time in the library on the South Campus, trying to find some suitable books for English and maybe a nice novel for me. I was happy to find we had a meeting in the afternoon because a whole day sitting in the office doing nothing isn’t very exciting…
After work and a little rest Andy and I went to Jinshan where he lives and works. Jinshan is a town about forty-five minutes out of Shanghai at the ocean. I wasn’t feeling very well so we took our time.
That evening we, me, Andy and Mark (Andy’s room-mate) went out in search of a club and finally after an hour or so we found one!
Laser lights and booming eighties and Chinese dance music welcomed us to the night-life of Jinshan. It was a strange and great experience since the instant we walked in we were popular and the centre of the party because we are lǎowài which means foreigner. They wanted to have pictures taken with us, talk with us, practising their English and to dance with us. We were greeted by the DJ, who was a lovely woman, wanting to know all about us.
Girls are very close to one another and dance quite intimately while the men have to keep their distance.
Then at around two in the morning everybody uped and left! So we called it a night too.
The Saturday we spent exploring the city and buying things for Andy’s house. The is a Tesco (a super supermarket) almost right next door, so we did most of our shopping there. They have the strangest things in the supermarket; life water snakes, life prone, whole raw and cooked chickens and chicks, a whole aisle with only oil.
On Sunday we wandered the streets in search of a spa, we found one not far from Andy’s neighbourhood. We had a full body massage, very nice and at times very painful! But my back, which has been hurting since two weeks, feels so much better now.
At around seven in the evening I headed off to Shanghai, home. After forty-five minutes on the bus I took a motorcycle taxi to my neighbourhood, it saved me a twenty minute walk and only cost me 5 yuan, plus it was a great ride!
Upon entering my apartment I found myself confronted with my nemesis, the cockroach! I let out a hight pitched scream (I couldn’t help myself) before I collected all my courage to go for the pursuit. I finally cough the bastard in a bowl and, knowing that crushing it would most likely release it’s eggs giving life to more monsters like it, I put it out of the door saying it should find some other people to terrorize! I have to say I’m very proud of myself for being so courageous and quick thinking! Later I found two really small ones, one I crushed and the other I drowned in the shower.
Now it’s Monday (it was horrible getting up this morning) and I’m sitting alone in my apartment. I haven’t seen any monsters today and I hope that maybe, just maybe, the big one went off to tell his family that they aren’t welcome here…
Cockroaches are supposed to be kind of smart, aren’t they? Well I hope so because I don’t think there is any thing to be done about them once they settled in, cleaning doesn’t help since they like it clean and they can survive on skin flakes for ages and filling my house with chemicals won’t help since it’s the whole building…
I started to clean my house and in doing so making it my own.
There are some things I still need: a broom or vacuum cleaner, an iron, plates and bowls, glasses and cups, a bin and something nice for on my wall. All things to get in the weekend!