Since I’ve actually been here for about 3 weeks, my apartment alone isn’t the only place that I have gone. So instead of making this one massively long post, I am going to blitz you all some shorter posts about some of the adventures and experiences I have had thus far. All right…ready…set...go!
The first week here was kind of hectic and a little bit overwhelming. On the first day that we got here, we went to Carrefour, which is basically a smaller French equivalent to Wal-Mart. And that’s when I got the sense that I wasn’t in Kansas anymore, Toto. I have never felt as bombarded by being foreign as I did that day. I can barely read the Hanzi (Chinese characters) and people are coming at me like I am a national. And all I can do is just shrug helplessly and look pitiful, and I think they get the fact that I can’t really understand what they are saying. I was done with that place in about 10 minutes. But, after a couple more trips (less hectic since we kind of then knew our way around), our apartment is finally almost completely set up.
School started, now we are barreling our way through some Chinese grammar and vocabulary. Dictations every day. Homework every night. So much reading for my other classes. Procrastination still lives in these veins. lol But, it seems like it is getting a little bit better. A few of you might be glad to know that my timeliness has improved. I will be going home, knowing how to be at a place on time. lol Most of the time. But the Chinese mentality here is that whatever doesn’t get done today, can be done tomorrow. So timeliness actually isn’t a ginormous deal here. (And I just wrote ginormous in Microsoft Word, and it did not tell me that it was incorrect. This day just keeps on getting better and better.) Chinese time - kind of like Spanish time. A lot of places even take long breaks in the middle of the day. Like a siesta but just a little bit shorter.
Some of the first things I noticed when we were riding around Chengdu was:
1. They drive crazier here than in Beijing.
2. There are less people than in Beijing.
3. It is a little more relaxed than Beijing.
4. Things stay open way later than Reno. Restaurants, convenience stores, shops. (This one I noticed when we went out the other night.)
With the exception of #1. I definitely prefer Chengdu. Guess I chose a city just right for me. =)
More to come.