Yan and Clif

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Re: Yan and Clif

Post  danny on Sun Nov 07, 2010 12:33 pm

Clif it is good to hear that Yan was able to pass her driver's licence. I am happy for her.

I am curious about life in PanYu. Is it the same as Nanning? How is the weather and the air quality? Are there many foreignors there? Is Mandarin used there or is Cantonese used a lot more? I hope things are going well for you.

Danny

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Re: Yan and Clif

Post  Admin on Sun Nov 07, 2010 1:10 pm

Life is little like what I had in Nanning. Everything is much more spread out. I have been venturing out but haven't gone far yet. As I learn the bus system and where to go, I will range farther away. Can't call the wife and have her tell the cabbie where to go here. HA.

Smog isn't bad. Not cold, not much rain so it's been pleasant so far.


More to follow.
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the first day....

Post  Admin on Sat Nov 20, 2010 1:44 am

Today is the first day I have even had a single thought about return home in frustration. So far it has been ok here and enjoyable with the kids. For the most part, I am totally alone here. There are 3 other westerners here and I occasionally have dinner with one of them. It's like going out with my grandson.

I have set up a international paypal account and have it up and working but when I try to use it, it tosses up Chinese pages that I need to work through to be able to complete the transaction. Of course I don't read Chinese. I was able to translate it but there are data entry fields. I asked one of the teachers to meet me at the office since I knew there was no way she would come to my home. No problem there. We got to the office and she was so afraid that someone would see her there with me, she wouldn't even come to my desk other than to stand in the isle and look at the computer. Once she did lean in and look but walked away and went to her desk and sent me a message instead of telling me. So frustratedly, I took my laptop to her desk and I thought she was going to have a buffalo. In total frustration, I closed up and left. I am sure she thinks I am nuts.

Now she is sending me messages in QQ about who I can ask or maybe I should go to my boss. Yeah, that works. Being alone in 10 million people is an interesting process.

Needless to say, my frustration is beyond reality. Add to that, my fridge still isn't working after a month.
Other than that Mrs. Lincoln, how was the play. or, Other than that Mrs. Kennedy, how was the trip to the airport.
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Yan and Cliff

Post  docmyster on Sat Nov 20, 2010 7:26 am

Clif,

Sorry to hear that you are having so much frustrations with your teching job in GZ. Do you regret ever taking the job?

I've been told by many it is much easier to do adult education and only teach English to adults or business professionals needing to learn English, since your direct contacts are with English speaking professionals at the school.

Others have suggested renting a small space and teaching from there in the evenings to non-business professional adutls and/or during the day to business professionals. My customers in Suzhou are trying to get me to do something like that in Suzhou and offer Business English as part of my consulting services.

Well, hang in there. You have to remember Dorothy, you're not in Kansas anymore. Smile

Snyder
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Re: Yan and Clif

Post  Admin on Sat Nov 20, 2010 8:19 am

The teaching part is fine. I have no problem with that. Compared to some of the stories I have heard from some of the teachers I have a paradise here.

It's getting assistance to get the required things done that causes the heart ache.

But, frustration has subsided, I will be fine.

Thanks ...

Clif
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Re: Yan and Clif

Post  danny on Tue Nov 23, 2010 2:26 am

Clif, what are you teaching? I am sure that it is English. Can you tell us more about your classes? I am thinking that if you give it time that you will find new friends that will help you out. Are they giving you any type of Chinese lessons/ classes?

Are there any public parks in the area? Do they practice Tai Chi or ballroom dancing there. Might be a way to find some new friends. Sounds like a potential of a great adventure. I was glad to hear that Yan passed her Driver's test.

Danny

PS. Not sure if you aware of it but Google translate will do Chinese Characters, English and PinYi and it will also say the words phonetically( but not that clear). I have had a time to find a translation program that does PinYi. Perhaps that will help you out sometimes.

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Re: Yan and Clif

Post  Admin on Tue Nov 23, 2010 3:52 am

Danny thank you so much for the suggestions. All of the things are available and I will and do go there. The frustration you hear was the instant need to have something done and the reluctance of people to step in. It will happen, I am impatient. Go figure.

Yes, I am teaching English. Actually it is a great place, much better than some I have heard of. My problem is making something happen that I need and doing it within the time period I want. My problem not someone elses .

I am finding more and more places as I go so it will be fine. Only a moment in time.

Thanks.
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Re: Yan and Clif

Post  danny on Mon Dec 13, 2010 1:37 am

Hi Clif, How are you doing? Do you get a long break for the holidays? When you get a chance please give us an update of like in Panyu, China. I would think that things must be still new but you also must be getting settling.

Danny

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it's getting better all the time

Post  Admin on Mon Dec 13, 2010 3:06 am

Hey Danny, thanks for the questions.

Things are getting better and better. I have spent the past 2 days shopping for things for creature comfort. It's going to be livable soon. Still not much rain.

I found a place that serves really good western food and then yesterday found a place that has 3 or 4 western markets so I was able to get some comfort stuff.

Panyu is south of the GZ area and there are about 3 major shopping areas. I hope soon to go to Shenzen where things are supposed to be even cheaper.

Thinking about going to Nanning soon. We will have a holiday from around Jan. 20 to Feb 24 or something like that. Then school ends about the 10th of July. Then I will have to decide what I am going to do for the summer which is about 2 months. Not sure what I will do yet.

Take care sir.
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Yan and Cliff

Post  docmyster on Mon Dec 13, 2010 3:37 am

Clif,

Where in Shenzhen are you going that is supposed to be cheaper? Are you talking about western food? If so, Futian District would be one place. As for general shopping for anything, it would be LuoHu. It is a 6 or 7 floor shopping center with over 1000 shops, and they have everything. You just need to stay away from any street vendors outside the shopping center, only buy from merchants in the shopping center. Negotiating is the key there.

Shenzhen is a very expensive place to buy unless you know exactly where to go. It is busting with foreigners and with Chinese immigrant workers that earn very good incomes. So this area is geared towards people with money to spend. A fascinating city to visit that is very westernized you think you were back somewhere in a major USA city.

Food is great! You have choices from Cantonese, Thai, American, French, Italian, Mexican, Japanese, German and more, especailly down by Shekou at the water-front.

If you get a chance to spend more than one day, I recommend you visit Window to the World or Wonders of the World, something like that. It is a place that has replicas of all the great places and wonders of the world, i.e., Eiffel Tower, Grand Canyon, Niagra Falls, etc.

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Re: Yan and Clif

Post  Admin on Tue Feb 15, 2011 10:03 am

Doc, I think we did go to Window on the world. Spent most of the time in the Swiss village. It was cool over all.

On another front. I was told today that the wife and son will be coming over here this summer. Just bought tickets. She will stay the month of June and he will stay till late July.

Good for both of them. It's been over 2 years for them.

Constant conversations going on to decide if I am going to renew my contract for another year.

Time will tell...

Hope everyone is doing well.

Clif
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Re: Yan and Clif

Post  Admin on Sun Feb 27, 2011 8:09 pm

Counting my way to 6 months in country now. Finally broke out of the mold yesterday and spent the weekend traveling around the city a little by myself. Took the bus to one of the major shopping centers, Tienhe, and then took the metro back. (subway). Then Sunday, took a bus for it's entire circut and then road the metro to the end of the line and back to my stop. I know, adverturous right. When you don't have a clue where you are going it's interesting. But hey, more to follow. HA.

On the home front, the wife is coming home in June with the boy. She will stay for a month, he will stay for 2 months. The trick is, she will be here for my last month in school and we won't be able to do the traveling I had hoped to do. So, it looks like I will do the weekend trip thing. It looks like it will be a packed last month.

It looks now like I will go to the US in July and stay for a while. Really torn about this but I get the sense that it will be best for everyone. The prevailing idea at this point is for me to return to the US and get more schooling then when the boy is in university, I will have a better CV and get an even better position. I already know this year of teaching is getting more doors open. We will see.

So far it has been an interesting ride. Doing it solo isn't what I would suggest for the faint of heart. There isn't much of a support network from the school unless you become ill. The teaching staff tend to segregate which leaves folks like me on the outside. It may also be an age thing. The Chinese do believe in some sort of age discrimination. HA. Having said that, they broke rules in getting me into this position. So, I can thank my boss for that.

The weather is better now, at least for this week anyway.

On the home front, the wife is still working and driving living the dream. Maybe she won't want to go back to Nanning when the boy goes to university. Who knows. HA.

Hope everyone out there is doing well.
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coming to an end

Post  Admin on Fri Jul 01, 2011 8:38 pm

Well the GZ adventure has almost come to an end. I will be returning to the US on the 9th of July. The wife will return to the US from Nanning after being there for a month on the 8th. we will arrive about 12 hours apart.

It's going to be interesting going home after 10 months away.

It is really sad leaving the school. I had 2 8th graders break down and cry when they found out I wouldn't be back next year. More on that later....

Full story will be included.

/clif
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Re: Yan and Clif

Post  danny on Sat Jul 02, 2011 1:43 am

Hello Clif,
I look forward to reading about your experiences in China. Are you in Nanning now? The other day I saw a photo of some the streets in Nanning being flooded. Do you know if the problem is thru-out Nanning or was it just localized in one part of town?

Hopefully we will here some stories about Nanning also. Have a good trip. Wish I was in Nanning now.

Danny

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Re: Yan and Clif

Post  Admin on Sat Jul 02, 2011 4:57 am

Hi Danny, I am in GZ until the 9th. The wife is in Nanning but hasn't said anything about flooding. She said it was raining hard but that was all.

As soon as I get settled a little I will write a tome about it.

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