Monday Mornings

Its thirty degrees in Taipei and I never leave the house without my hat and umbrella.  However, due to the fact that I am always trying to shield myself from the sun I’ve noticed that I can obscure my vision and end up bumping into things!  That’s right I can get lost on the walk home or be forced to stare down at the pavement while crossing a major intersection.
Today was a bit of a testy day in Chinese class.  We are learning numbers, money, and cents which for the moment I find to be a bit confusing.  Today in class some people, (who are practically fluent in Chinese), laughed at me and another student who is also struggling.  Well, I was not about to take their rude and condescending attitude lying down.  I immediately gave scruffy-dim-whit Australian man, who was wearing black shorts with fire flame graphics!- a piece of my mind.  For the moment that has settled the other cold know-it-alls.  But I am disappointed that this is what my Chinese class has turned into.  After all I signed up for level 1.  Not teach your self Chinese on the weekend class.  Not the class for people who are from Asia and already know Chinese.  I actually expected to meet cool people at the Mandarin Training Center and have a good time.  Instead I am with people who for the most part don’t work, have good knowledge of the language already, and study Chinese full-time!  Imagine that!
Moreover, my teacher is not exactly the helpful type.  She expects us to learn the material on our own outside of class.  We are supposed to come into class with our vocabulary memorized and concepts mastered.  Forget about asking a question, because in the culture of this class, that is considered to be rude and you will have revealed yourself to be an idiot for not knowing everything in the first place.
To get though things I am teaming up with a wayward Frenchman who is also struggling and we are going and study with the kind Indonesian girl tomorrow.  Although, I have other plans, I need to make the class a priority if I expect to last, let alone pass.
Due to the demands of this course, I have had little time for much else.  My photography is on the back burner for the moment. I find that it is hard to de-stress and rest, let alone be creative.   However, next weekend should be different.  It’s John’s birthday and we are planning on going out which should be fun.  I’ve already starting planning my outfit….


4 Responses to “Monday Mornings”

  1. 1 globetrotteri
    July 10, 2007 at 6:14 am

    Keep pecking at it Jo. And don’t take any crap from anyone! It really sucks that your classmates are so unsupportive and condescending. I think you’re terrific for what you’re doing! And it’s wonderful that you’ve found a few friends to study with.

  2. July 11, 2007 at 5:11 am

    Good luck with your Chinese studies! I can tell you from experience that it gets easier, though certainly a classroom environment like the one you describe doesn’t help. 加油!

  3. 3 Lisa Bettany
    July 11, 2007 at 8:42 pm

    it’s really hot here too.. makes me lazzzy! just stopping by to send you a little love. hope your studies are going well.


  4. 4 Amy
    July 12, 2007 at 3:37 pm

    It’s amazing you’ve done so well in the class. Your mid-term mark is awesome considering the class! Sad that there are some jerks in your class… but it’s really awesome that you are teaming up with some of the nicer people. I hope you find some time to do something you enjoy and treat yourself. You’ve been working hard!


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