Well, we have officially found ourselves into the middle of November in Chongqing and the weather here, for fall, has been top notch. It feels like the beginning of fall in the Midwest instead of almost Thanksgiving. Each of us has been here for almost three months now and I think my favorite part is that while every day is an adventure, I feel like we have settled into a rhythm.
About a month ago we played in our first rugby tourney but as nervous as we were, it went swimmingly. The sport itself is so much fun, and I actually played pretty well, but easily the best part is the culture that surrounds it. After a day full of beating up on each other, each side gathers at a local watering hole to max on some dinner and enjoy a beverage or two. As I am finally publishing this post, we will be on our way to our next tournament shortly. This one will not be at our home field, but rather a two hour trek via bullet train to Chengdu.
In the classroom, I am beginning to learn which of my students actually care to be there and which don’t, but I think karma is getting me back for my study habits in school all these years. I am loving the challenge of finding things that work with the students that I have, but it certainly has its share of valleys to accompany the peaks. It is one of the worst feelings to plan a lesson and, whether it be my fault or just uncooperative students that day, have it massively flop in my face. There are some students that probably shouldn’t be there for either of our sakes due to the language barrier but we’ll work our way through it. I can truly say that I have a sincere respect for teachers that I never appreciated before, especially of the esl variety.
These last few months have been stellar, highlighted by our most recent trip to Wulong, which was one of the most spectacular locations I have ever witnessed. The fourth Transformers movie was filmed there and with the depth of the crevasse created by the years and years before us it really made me stop and think about how short my time on earth is. The following two months include two rugby tournaments, an end of the season gathering, hopefully another weekend trip and once Christmas comes, that’s the end of the semester. Considering we have two months of break between semesters, a portion will be spent back in the states and a portion traveling over here. Both of which I am so incredibly pumped for. I cannot wait to see my family and friends back home but roughly three weeks with the one and only McKenna Mitchell tearing apart Southern Asia should be legendary as well, I’m sure. I cannot believe the tickets have been booked and you’ll be joining me but I can’t put into words how thankful I am that you kept on me and pulled the trigger. Not to be left out, we should be expecting a visit from the one and only Fumblin Febs here shortly, although he has left all but his boo thang in the dark on when we’ll see that sure to be dirtily grown facial haired mug. I have only one word to describe his addition to our posse: Savagery.
All in all, while I miss my mom & dyl more than I ever could have imagined, the highs do outweigh the lows and China has been truly unbelievable. There will be a part II to this post with numerous pictures from my time here, I am just too lazy to transfer them all from my phone at the moment, so stay tuned! Like I have said before, we frequently have access to social media to drop us a line if you so choose. One of us should respond, I am sure.
In the words of Nate Konen circa 2010: Two fingers for now America.