Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Update on Life at Shida.

I've been in Linfen for almost 3 weeks now. I'm teaching regularly now, 7 two hour classes a week, supposed to be 8 but I'm not complaining. All but one of my classes are Freshman non-English majors, the other being post grad non-English. Most classes are about 50 students and mostly girls, as this college is mainly for students who want to become teachers. Life here has been good so far, I have made a few Chinese friends, explored the city some and tried quite a few new dishes.

I apologize for the lack of pictures on here lately, I haven't been carrying my camera around too much, mostly because I'm still getting comfortable here. I already draw a lot of attention being a white foreigner and a giant camera just adds to it, but also I don't want to get into any trouble with the law so I want to feel out the political climate a little more too. Lately I've been devoting a lot of my free time to studying Chinese, I'm trying to regain a lot of what I have forgotten and get my conversational up to speed.

For now I've included a night-scape of Shanxi Shida, short for Shīfàn Dàxué (or Normal University). Also here's a picture of an asian style burger i concocted up from meat I bought at the butcher, and lastly a pumpkin I carved because, well, things like this make me happy.

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Pet Fish!

I bought some additions for the apartment. Meet Carlton and Marty. I also picked up this tree at the market. It's nicknamed "Facai shu" or "get rich tree". I looked it up and it's real name is Malabar Chestnut.

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Linfen Apartment

This is the outside of my apartment building from the back.

My kitchen with awkwardly low counters and high cabinets.

My little fridge and washer.

Check out the sweet lamp.

The spare room, equipped with a mattress and everything. This apartment was intended for a couple.

My little porch with clotheslines and a sweet plant.

My view of the giant Garfield mural.

I'm all settled in Linfen. After lugging my bags through Beijing and crashing three days at my friend Han's place it was nice to finally move into a place of my own. My apartment here is real nice and now I have the internet up and running. I had to do a little hacking to get to a few sites including this one though. Apparently my blog must be to racy for Chinese eyes. So I created a secure shell (SSH) tunnel to the server where my website is hosted and then configured foxy proxy to access blocked sites via that server. Its been working for sites like blogger, but facebook and twitter don't normally load all the way, so I might have to let those go for a while.

Anyways the university I ended up at is pretty nice. The apartments are good, the five other English teachers are all friendly and they say the university always pays on time and is pretty attentive to your needs. I don't have any classes yet but I was a guest teacher for one of my co-workers classes, just so I could get my feat wet.

I haven't taken many pictures yet. I've mostly just been walking around observing and getting comfortable here. Hopefully some images will come soon.