Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Life 6 months later in Ch/na

Hello Friends!  Now that Dozier and I have a little more time, I would like to take a moment and let you in on our lives after being here 6 months!  Last fall semester was terribly difficult in just getting settled, battling sicknesses, allergies (with me--> Michaella), sleep deprivation, facing challenging deadlines, and just pouring ourselves into our students.  Routines have been put in place in the Lee home, and well thought through plans to balance our family time, teaching time, min. is. try  time with our students and taking care of our relationships Stateside.  It took a solid two months to get our money in our hands, internet set up, knowledge of where to get food (other than peanut butter and cafeteria!) and start feeling human again.  Well, classes resume for me next week and the following after for Dozier, so we shall see how well things go!   We feel a bit more prepared now for life in C hi na!   

After classes and deadlines ended December 27th, we slept all we could and ate every American dish we could create for a few weeks and just enjoyed the peace and quiet during our 'recovery time'.  Once we rejuvenated our bodies, cleaned our house top to bottom, we stayed on the phone talking with loved ones back home for all hours of the night to keep up with our relationships Stateside.  

We were, and still are, terribly homesick; this time here in the quiet has strengthened our love for The FATHER and our marriage in this time alone.  Even in the middle of the busy city, we feel alone because  of the language barrier.  How sad it is when you want to engage with someone, and you just can't!  It is terribly frustrating... and sad...  We have stayed on youtube, in the books, and phone apps to learn what we can during this winter break and all I can say is 'Dwey boo chee, teemb buh doe' (spoken in the falling tone).  I do not know the pinion so I spelled it out phonetically for you to try and say.  I said:  "I am sorry, I do not understand".  

Between the German and English department, and my school, we have made some good friends and learn from each other about the culture.  Some things we have done in our downtime, has been gathering in each others home to share meals, laughter and play board games.

I will be posting more on our classrooms since all my pictures are sorted and categorized, so please check back in the next few days for a look into our life here now!  I am adding the following pictures from around the campus I took just before it got really cold, so I think first or second week of October.  They are buildings, crops and roads right here near the campus; I took them just walking around the campus and on the main road near by.

The academy is to my immediate left, (then the college campus) as I look down into the main street heading into the city.   All of the buildings on the right are apartments.  

The ground shown here is used for crops.  It is located on the path leading my my school to the campus at where Dozier teaches.  It is hard to see, but there are phone numbers on some of the light colored areas on the wall.  I do not know what they phone numbers are for.

I am standing and facing the dorm and business building area, with my back to my school.  I am still standing on the big path leading from the Elementary school to the college campus.  To the right of the crops you see, is the path from the dorm to the school I use to get to school.  It takes about 10 minutes to get to work for me, (Michaella).

The path connecting our two schools, looking over the city, this is a view to the right from the
 picture just above.

This is the same path, just slightly turned to the right from the picture just above.  Do you see the cream colored building on the right?  That is the school I teach in!

On my walk around, I saw some of the natives burning piles of dead crops.  I think this is to help clear the land of the leftover dead plants that will not help rejuvenate the soil.  On my walk to school every morning, I walk thorough rows and rows of very tall large sunflowers and as soon as the seeds are harvested, the plants are left to die and put the nutrients back into the ground.  But, unlike the very dead plants, they get burned to make room for new plants.

The looooong walk up the path connecting the two schools.  On both sides, you will see many people working their feilds.  I always wave, smile and say hello in Ch i. ne. se  and K or. ean because I do not know which the person is just by looking at them.

Looking up the path at most of the buildings on the college campus.  

Hope you enjoyed the scenic pictures of where we walk each week!  It is Tuesday night here and Valentine's is in two days.  We will celebrate by making chicken and dumplings, banana bread or an apple cake made from scratch.  Our gifts will just be homemade cards and time spent together, maybe looking at a book I made of all the love notes we shared in our year and a half of dating.  It's very sweet and I am so glad I kept the notes and put them all in a book!

Much love to all and Happy Valentine's day!  Please eat some chocolate for us :)

D  +  M

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