First weekend in Tianjin
Trip Start May 05, 2012
49Trip End Mar 01, 2013
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As great as the movie was, it didn't start until 10pm and finished just after 12. Consequently we didn't make it home until after 1am. Finding a taxi that won't charge you a ridiculously large amount of money to take you a short distance at that time can be challenging! Saturday morning we had to wake up at 6.30am to get ready for our first big day at school. We watched 3 or 4 classes each on Saturday, and I even got to meet one of the classes I (Steph) will be taking over next week
One girl drew a picture of me as her drawing activity in class. She explained in Mandarin that it was me, and then pointed to the yellow hair in the drawing and grabbed my own hair to make sure I understood!
We also got to have a play on the interactive white boards today while we were waiting for classes to begin. Check out the pics of Evan's animal drawings- endless hours of entertainment!
We were able to leave early both days (around 5.30) which was great, as we were both really tired after late nights and high energy classes. Instead of having to go out and find somewhere to eat dinner last night we made vegetable and noodle fritters and then were asleep by about 9 pm! Tonight we had a bit more energy and so we went to a Korean place called Tudari, ordering our meals by the simple saying "yi ge zhe ge" [yeeh guh jae guh] which means "one of these" and is immensely useful for pointing at pictures!. We sort of got it right- well we both ended up with edible meals anyway, if not quite the ones we thought we asked for! Feeling confident we decided a good 'ole Maccas McFlurry would be a great dessert, so we ordered, using the same saying and pointing to pictures, and received McFlurries in return (BTW, they use proper McFlurry machines here...remember how they used to do it? Putting the spoon in the machines to give it a whirl??)
Now we are back at our unit, contemplating what to do with ourselves over our two days off. We begin our Mandarin lessons tomorrow (horray!) but other than that we have the days to ourselves.
So one week in! So far we have learnt:
- To say "thank you" - Xiaxia [Sher-sher] (pronounced like you have a lisp as I found out today: no wonder shop keepers/taxi drivers have been giving me indulgent smiles when I thank them, apparently I've been saying it wrong all the time).
- "zhe ge" [jae guh] - that one, or # of that - so useful for food!
- To find our way to, and pronounce the name of our building "Cheng Ji" [Chung Gee]
- To use the subway (at least to all the stops that we need at the moment!)
- How to cross the road - don't laugh, it's scary!
- How to buy vegetables and recognise numbers (even if we only realise it too late for it to be of use)
- How to push our way onto lifts. Honestly you won't get on if you are polite!
- Relearn the alphabet song. Apparently it has changed since we last sang it.
- Take a taxi by ourselves
- Start learning Mandarin - this cannot come soon enough!
- Learn all of our TA/Children's names
- Experience being a sardine, AKA riding the bus to work
- Try the donkey meat BBQ downstairs - apparently it is delicious
- Don't get sick.
Keep the comments coming, we love hearing from you all!