it's been a while since i've posted something. there is really no excuse for it except that i have been feeling terribly overwhelmed lately. not in a bad or good way. i just have and as things move slowly back to normal, i feel like i can breathe.
let me catch you up on what has been going on in china.
1. i rode my first sleeper train. it was much more comfortable than the seat i had when we went to sanya. i don't know why they don't have such comfy transportation in america. i mean, i'm sure they do, but i think most people choose the alternative and get to their destination in a couple of hours rather than a couple of days. but, if sleeper trains ever become available, i'll be one of the first people in line for a ticket. where will i go, you ask? that, has yet to be determined.
2. i climbed the great wall of china. and when i say 'the great wall of china,' i mean the actual great wall. not that rebuilt garb that you see on tv and tourist photos. it was the actual-crumbling-under-my-feet great wall of china. it was awesome. by far, one of the coolest things i have done in my life, as well as one of the most exhausting. scaling the straight up cliffs of the great wall is something i won't ever forget. if you ever go to beijing, simitai will be your favorite place to be.
3. i got lost in one of the biggest cities in the world. that city being beijing, china. yeah, it's true. and me, being super travel savvy, never saw getting lost as an option. i thought that maybe if we just walked around we would be able to find our way, or at least find someone that spoke english. oh man! i was way off. there was no way of finding which way to go, because, strangely, everything was in chinese and everyone within a 2 mile radius of us could only speak chinese. but, as it turns out, we weren't exactly lost, the train station we were at wasn't the one we were supposed to be at. it's a long story, but no worries, we made it to the correct train station, found our way, and all is well. but let me warn you, if you ever get lost in beijing. stay where you are. walking around only makes things worse, and makes you really tired. and cranky. hug a tree. or an asian.
4. i got kicked out of a taxi, by a very angry taxi driver. you see, a bunch of us (ilp teachers) got together in beijing and went to the hard rock cafe for dinner. well, we had 9 people, and you can only fit 4 in a taxi, but when the taxi driver started driving, he was distracted and didn't realize that there were 5 passengers in the car. he started yelling really loud, in chinese of course, and getting really upset and pulled the car over and made us all get out. AND made us pay 10 yuan for the ride. well, things got worse from there, when we couldn't get any taxi's to stop for us. i think the guy that kicked us out, radioed all his friends in the area and told them not to pick up the 5 american girls walking down the street. it was a pretty scary experience walking down the streets of beijing, with no idea of which way to go and no one around to help us. but, again, we finally got someone to help us and made it to our destination safe and sound.
5. i spent more money in 3 days than i ever thought was possible. but don't worry, it's a good thing. and no, i didn't spend all the money on myself. i'm not selfish.
6. i felt really homesick for the first time since i have been in china. of course, there have been times when i've felt a little tired of being in china, but i have never felt physically sick and felt the need to go home. the day we got home from beijing was the first day of my homesickness. i'm still feeling the affects of it, but i'm still here. i feel so helpless, but all is well. i'm doing what i can, with what i have. and pretending to be in two places at once.
7. i payed my respects to the man who single-handedly ruined china's hope for becoming an independent nation. the man who brought the people up, but tore everything out from under them. the man that brainwashed the chinese into thinking that he was helping them, but in reality he was ruining their lives, one poor decision after another. let me just say that chairman mao, was the most self involved, self loving man and seeing the giant portrait of him at tien an men square and all the people bowing and worshiping him, made me feel very uneasy.
alrightl. i suppose that is the jist of what has been going on with me.
until next time.
peace and love. from the chiner.