www.Chinaandmark.com new location

March 22, 2010

well here i am, the new blog website. such a shame china has stopped access to my other blog website, owell.

here are the last two blogs that i was unable to publish on my last site.

Blog entry date 12/3/10

Almost at the end of my first week of real teaching,, while the school has done everything in its power to keep me from hanging around when i dont have classes, there are some things they cant change, so on Fridays i am stuck at school all day. Sundays i will have a 2 hour break with nothing to do. on Sundays i have a english corner and 3 normal classes. The english corner is for students who dont pay anything but come in from the high school and speak some english. Its a way for the school to give something back. Problem is for me that there are people saying it will start at 7.45am. o well, live and let live.

My classes.

The older classes are great. We jump and move around and all of them participate. No problems there.

The middle classes. Well these 4 classes consist of about half the class participating and the rest playing around while being seated. normally turning and chatting with each other or having fights over something or another.

Lower classes. These consist of 3 or 4 students out of 40-50 participating and the rest looking very worried. (some parents and grandparents standing watching me)

Baby classes. Well this consists of 0 zero teaching and normally just crying with parents and grandparents looking on (some times in the class standing 3meters away looking at me.) most just hang over the windows and stare. Some on phones as well (some times shouting, some times coming into my classroom and walking past me to get to the window for a better signal)

I also have the teacher class.

The teachers need to improve there oral english, so i deal with that. Some times they ask me if i can write it down and i answer no. (at which point a teacher that knows jumps up and writes it probably correctly)

Then i have the added classes, people pay to come to these classes after i have finished working at the kindergarten.

These consist of kids sitting next to parents and phones constantly ringing and parents talking.

Although i noticed one mother who refused to answer her phone while she was in the class. (this could be as when ever a phone went off i instantly stopped mid sentence and stared at the offender/ the general direction of the offender untill i had identified the culprit.

My house.

My house now has a bathroom door (yay) and while still bloody cold at night, i now have a hairdryer to warm up the bed before we get in.

I have given liyang a english name; Anita. Now she can fit in when in class rooms with me. The other teachers here are constantly surprised that when liyang can’t translate what i have said i will do it my self. My pronunciation here is starting to change, i am now not pronouncing “r” on the end of most words and “sh” and making them a “s” sound instead (a form of dialect) although saying 4, 10, 14, 40, 44 is very tricky, especially if you have to say “are/is/am” next to it, as it all sounds the same. 10 and am/is/are have the same tone as well. L

But no one said living in china would be easy, although living near beijing was easier.

Friend wise, im still very low. In fact i have no male friends at all (well there is Kim, but i have only seen him 3 or 4 times (hunting)). But I have quite a few female friends (drives Liyang/Anita a little bit mad)

People do always want ot speak to me, but a lot of the time (very bad i know) i just cant be bothered, and men give up instantly where as the women will continue until i am in a better mood, i have had a group of 4 camp out side the work for a week to speak to me. I had a quick chat but waiting for me after i have just finished work and want to have a shower and a cigarette, i have not been in the best of mood (for the whole day i have used allot of energy and am totally shattered at this point)

Finaly the security guard alerted Snow and Snow took them into the office and told them it was very bad manners in england to do this. If they want to talk they must wait until Saturdays open english corner. We will see if they have taken the advice.

Life here continues. Although right the moment i have very poor, i need to wait 28 days until i get paid and i have only 1,000 rmb left to feed 2 people and get to work for the month. But on the bright side, i have a new laptop and a washing machine and have explored some of the city and have new clothes and some things i need for work.

Once i get paid i need to pay the landlord 3,000 rmb for the rental of the shop, i need to get a coffee machine and some tables and cups and glasses and chairs and paint the walls of the shop, get the sign made, change down some cash to have a workable flout and some other things need to be sorted out

I need to give liyang/ Anita 1,000 rmb for partial registration of the shop, and deal with some other bits and bobs, so next month i will have about 2,000 rmb to live on, but will also have a little income from the shop… maybe

For those that arnt of Facebook.

I have decided to open up a little coffee/ hot chocolate (real coco) / milkshake bar.

When liyang isnt translating for me in classes she will be there working (she is the owner of it, i do not work or own it my self, I cant in china, not easily any way) and on Sundays i will also be there (not working just relaxing) with the interest from the english corner i will let them know that on Sundays i will be in the cafe having a drink if they want to drop by (there are alot of english learners in the university next to where i live that want to practice there english, and what better way than over a hot coco drink or western style coffee with a westerner) At the end of the day as long as it breaks or only has a small loss then i dont care to much. Rent is 1500rmb per month. With one month in advance. I am having no contact with the landlord and liyang is looking like a student who wants to try some thing but doesnt have much money.

We are getting a little advice from a local women who owns a burger shop about what we can get away without doing with regards to the proper beijing way for setting up a company. She is across the street from the shop we want.

End blog entry 12/3/10

PUBLSHED above things

Well today,

I had 23 young adults come to my English corner, and after a very long talk with everyone talking we had the photo opportunity, which resulted in 30 or 40 photos with me and different students and doing things and making every one laugh.

It was truly the greatest moment of my career, I felt like a pop star.

I think I will stay in ningde after all, while I am used to photos being taken of me from afar and sometimes people coming over and asking, I have never had it where no matter which direction I look people are there with there mobile phones taking photos, a real power rush… totally over whelming.

So, as it would appear I am the best thing since sliced bread (which is very hard to get here) I am thinking of using my new found fame as a advertising gimmick for the coffee shop. That and my strange choice in decoration (ie live snakes in tables and things) it will either be a great success or a fantastic failure. But regardless, nothing much ventured so I don’t mind if it fails like so many other businesses,

I can say, I have tried and I have failed.. which is better than never trying I think..

I am happy to report, that apart from my 15 mins of fame, I am still really enjoying it here, and while I miss English peoples séance of humor and my friends in SJZ, there is something here that is some how so relaxing, and yet so full of life if you choose to find it.

Of course it depends how you choose to see the world. I think many people would say its lonely here, but there are allot of people out there, it just takes some knowledge to Chinese and every one is more than happy to talk to you. in SJZ I think I was isolated, more stuck with the westerners and to be honest I did want many Chinese people as friends, but here if you don’t have them as friends you will go mad, each person I have talked to have been good people, friendly, more than willing to change what you don’t understand into a way that you can understand it, they talk about anything from music to dvds, and Olympics and the Expo 2012,, they love to ask you questions and learn a little about there new found western friend.

normally the women are far more keen to talk than the men and also speak better English. It is seen that men are better at badminton and something else and women are better at ping pong and English. Well, that’s in the eyes of the women I have spoken to, although even motorcycle taxi’s have started to say “good morning foreigner teacher” (zhou shang hao, wag gou laoshi)

This coming from someone whos sole job it is to drive around on a motor cycle and pick people up and take them to there destinations in one piece is quite good, (I think these jobs are for people who don’t want to work in a proper job or who cant find work, so they buy a motorcycle and get a license (possibly buy that as well))

Not much to report this time round,, well apart from kids saying bad things like “ w**k*r dog”, instead of “ walk a dog”but these sort of mistakes are going to happen, best thing is to try and ignore them, as other wise kids pick up on it and will remember these words.

So will try and add to it before my next publish date

Love mark.

Hello world!

March 22, 2010

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