The maintence dep still need to fix brick today.Please be at your appart.Thanks”
02.03.2011 - 05.03.2011
The maintenance people just left. They knocked on my door this morning 08:45. I was already up, because I was expecting them anytime soon. The lady responsible for our rooms (I can’t remember ever meeting her) said that they would stop by Saturday and Sunday. Wednesday 07.48 she sent me this text: “The maintence dep still need to fix brick today.Please be at your appart.Thanks” Yes, the bad spelling is on purpose. Please notice how she didn’t even mention when they’ll be there, it’s not like I don’t have classes to attend! And this was the first time I’ve heard of any ‘brick’ that needed fixing. I thought they were installing a washing machine (I still don’t have one). The ‘brick’ turned out to be some roof repair. Which I’ve been seeing (and hearing…) over the past few days. Two guys were outside my door when I opened, one in red builder’s uniform (like overalls) the other in full police- looking attire. They walked straight through my room, to the balcony. The one in red clothes climbed on the outside of the building, standing in the open kitchen window. I didn’t check if they had any security equipment. But I think he had a plastic helmet, you know that’s useful if you fall from the 7th floor…They stayed for 2 hours, the only sign of them being here is the dust and debris on my balcony.
When the mysterious, maintenance lady called me on Thursday, I told her I was in my office and couldn’t make it. I had to work. Through the bad connection and heavy accent I heard “Saturday and Sunday”. I told her I might be gone the entire weekend. But apparently they only needed my permission to enter my room, while I was gone. I was planning on storing my valuables in Amanda’s room next door. But this turned out to not be necessary. We decided to have a ‘quiet’ weekend instead and just go to our local area. This was perfect for me, because I was exhausted after my one hellish Friday lesson. I can honestly say that 3B is my worst class so far. They’re my only class on Fridays, but I suspect there’s a reason why. They. Are. Impossible.
I was tired beyond myself and didn’t feel like going on a long, weekend trip spending a night or two far away from here. I didn’t want to spend too much money either, because we will probably go somewhere next weekend to celebrate Mark and Jeppe’s birthdays (the two Danish guys). I’m not sure where we’ll go yet. So this weekend we met with the other TTC and i-i people placed here. We had a fairly cheap dinner at a restaurant (we were eight people and paid about 21 yuan each) We took a bus, trying to find somewhere new to go. We ended up at a diner, but we didn’t want to stay in this area as it was not much going on. We contacted an i-i person who’s been here longer than all of us, he was at a KTV quite close to us, with a little help from his Chinese friend we managed to tell the directions to the cab driver. We arrived without any problems. His Chinese friend was having a wedding party here and came to greet us. The ten of us got a room together (complete with a bathroom/western toilet- our one luxury) and spent a few hours singing our hearts out. When it passed midnight, we decided it was time to head home.
I had completely forgotten about my maintenance appointment the following morning, I realized this just as I went to bed. I had to wake up early, because I didn’t know when they would show up. They’ve left now, but I can still hear the sound of tools pounding at walls/roof. I hope they finish soon. Speaking of the constant noises; My Friday morning was terrible, as I’ve mentioned earlier my building is located right next to Leads Kindergarten (Where Jeppe and Mark are placed). Every morning they play music and have exercises, which I haven’t been to bothered with so much. Until this Friday, when they chose to play Hannah Montana… I couldn’t sleep anymore and all I could feel was pity for those poor, little children. They also played the Hokey Pokey song which is equally annoying.
P. E seems to be very important at our school. We have multiple sport arenas (running tracks), basketball courts and a swimming pool on campus. Every day the students have do some kind of exercises/marching/dancing in sync. And you also have the ‘eye exercises, where students rub their faces for 15 min. every day. It’s a bit strange, but you get used to the weirdest things when you’re exposed to something like that over time.
Today is Saturday. I don’t really have any definite plans. I might do some laundry, using Amanda's washing machine. It shouldn’t be a problem..
I also have to decide on a topic for my lessons next week. I have quite a few ideas, it’s just hard to pick one and figure out what I can do with the topic. I haven’t used their books yet. All the books are very similar, no matter what Grade it’s for. They consist of absurd conversations and situations which I don’t really find useful. But I might have to use the books in the misbehaving classes, this is what they’re used to. I’m sure that if they don’t have this kind of structure, they are more likely to misbehave in class. But most of my classes do fine without their book. I often get the younger ones to draw things, because it’s easier to speak to them while they’re busy drawing. They’re more relaxed and produce more language this way.
We’ve had quite a few gray days recently, because of pollution etc. But the temp. is still comfortably warm. I doubt I’ll need my jacket here at all anymore. I hope we get blue skies, so that I can take some nice pictures of the campus, to put on here for you to see.