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Sunday, September 18, 2011

Mummies, My Time in Beijing, and Home Schools

So - chronological order! Mummies!  

- apparently a villager in Jiangxi Province was digging and stumbled across a tomb dating back from the Ming Dynasty! There were 3 coffins and one of them contained a well-preserved body with hair, skin, fingernails and everything! Cool!

I have mixed feelings about my time in Beijing, at least the second time around. I stayed in 永泰小区, which is in the northern part of the city and has no English speakers and only 1 Western restaurant, McDonald's, which was about 3 miles away from where I stayed. The great thing about being in a non-English speaking place is that your language skills get so much better because if you don't speak Chinese - you don't eat. You can't do anything without speaking Chinese.

I did, however, get to go to all of the major tourist destinations! That was pretty cool, but had its downsides as well. Overall, I think I enjoyed my time.

So I went to a lot of the same places and established friendships with some of the waiters and stuff and met some cool people. It was okay, but I really began to miss speaking English. I called my friends Benjamin and Linda a couple of times because I really wanted to speak English. I called my dad a few times too. It was also lonely, because I didn't know anybody in Beijing - I just knew Guang Lin, who was the guy I was staying with in Linda's apartment (long story). He was cool, but he didn't speak English, so I had nobody to fall back on to speak my 'native' language.

So, really, Chinese became my native language and kind of already was because I practiced so much in Lanzhou (off campus). When I came back to America, I was overwhelmed with English - it was like learning my native language over again. The first couple of days were really hard and I was having trouble finding words like 'shelf' and 'overpass' in my was weird.

And last (and....least...interesting?) is that home schools are on the rise in China - people just aren't putting as much faith in public education as they used to. Because China's schools are so big and impersonal, creative thinking, individualism, and innovation are nonexistent in the classroom. So, parents have started to personalize education (which I think is a great idea for Chinese kids) on their own.

I'm going to try to integrate more daily events and stuff like that on my YouTube and tie it in with my blog - I really love doing this and I'd like to get it out there. I'd love to just do commentary on what's happening in China right now along with sharing my'd be easy and fun!

But the whole part of a salary...................yeah............oh well, a guy can dream, right?

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