The course is almost over, and I’m looking to find a job. Someone called the school about 100 available jobs in China today. They were all in Shanghai and Beijing, where the architecture is beautiful and the air is chewy. It does tell me that there is plenty of potential there for when I am ready. I really want to go, but I have so much to do first.
I’ve been spending a lot of time working on preparing for college life and dealing with the class I’m in. Next week I start taking Qi Gung and Tai Chi at the cultural center. Once I have a job I can start looking at doing more of what I want. Spanish, more Mandarin, Wing Chun, and I’m sure I’ll find more in the city. There are classes for almost everything here. I want to learn to cook Mexican food also.
I love this city. It reminds me a lot of home, but I don’t really feel like I’m home. It will take me time to relax into the speed of things here. I’m looking forward to knowing what time I have to spend working and what time I’ll have free.
I wandered around the west side of town for five hours on Saturday. I walked out my door for half an hour and wound up just walking the streets. I love the mix of architecture, the old and the new styles, the crumbling buildings next to brand new housing. Everything here feels so small, but it seems to go on forever. You can never really know what’s around the next corner. Sometimes it’s more of the same, sometimes a massive church or mall that you couldn’t see past the trees and houses.
I got on the wrong bus at one point which started heading into a much dirtier part of town. I had no way to know which bus would take me where I wanted to go, and I couldn’t understand the bus driver. Without t-mobile I would have had a much harder time getting home. GPS makes it easy to find where you are going, but that may not be a good thing. Maybe it would have been better for me to fight with the language, try and ask people where to go. Technology and preparation seem to interfere with human interaction a lot.
The only problem I’ve really come across here is the buses. The drivers act like they’re on a racetrack, fighting against other drivers to get ahead. They drive in circles around the city all day, why are they in such a hurry? Worse is when one of them pulls out their cellphone. I bailed on that bus, fortunately it was already within walking distance of home.
I find I love teaching. I love explaining things to people, having them understand, having them use the knowledge. It’s one of the few things I’m really passionate about. I can’t wait until I have a class of my own, something consistent, that I can do more than have a single class with. I’m glad I’m learning so many different levels and styles of teaching, but I don’t like never knowing what will be on the other side of the door. It hasn’t been a problem so far, but I still get that feeling in the pit of my stomach.
I was talking to my teacher today about places to teach. I’m considering going to Mexico City for a year if Jose is willing to come down. South America would be awesome, but he suggested Panama. I have a friend who fought in Panama, way back. He always told great stories. It’s a bit close to the equator, but then so is Colombia. Apparently they’ve been having problems with companies breaking their contracts in Argentina, but I didn’t want to learn their Spanish anyway. It’s too different from the language I know to be what I want.
I feel like I’m running out of time. There are too many places to see, too much to do for one lifetime. Time is only an illusion, something we cling to so we don’t have to deal with the reality of life. What gets done, gets done. What does not, does not. There is no use worrying over what could be, or should have been. But it is a comfortable lie.