Regrettable Decisions

Have you ever had to make a decision that was so right in your mind but ever so wrong in your heart? Intellectually, you knew it was the right decision. Emotionally, you wish you didn’t have to make such life changing decisions.

Watch this beautifully composed video of my students and coworkers wishing me well and saying farewell as we prepare to leave China and return to the USA. I’ll share more about our move in a different post. 

Teaching in China is so rewarding and life enriching. Our elementary school is not all about numbers and scores, it is more about teaching children to have passion for education. It was an absolute joy and pleasure to have been a part of these young lives that will remain forever in my heart.

So, with tears in my eyes, sorrow in my heart, and love for my children (students), I share this wonderful video in hopes that you can see why these students brought me so much joy.

Making Due With Three Wheels

We’ve seen some pretty amazing things with some of the locals and what they can do with 2 and 3 wheels. Whether out of necessity or determination, the locals haul anything or anyone. Look at these amazing and wonderful people, they make do with what they have to move mountains (not literally).

I’ve seen a young man texting while on a scooter in local traffic, a family of 4 on one scooter, up to 8 people on a 3 wheel cart, and a man riding his scooter while he walked 5 dogs. I can only tell you about these times as I was too dumb founded to hurry up and snap a shot.

Life here is so interesting and wonderful! Please enjoy the photo’s.

Building Blocks

A few week’s ago we were walking home after having a very filling and wonderful dinner. The evening was dense with heat and no air movement to speak of. The town was filled with people strolling about enjoying the evening and trying to find some measure of comfort. The only smell in the air was the lingering smell of fireworks. The sounds were the same, crackling fireworks and horns blaring from cars, trucks, scooters, and even bicycles.

As we were walking home we noticed a little boy and his mother. The mother was busy enjoying the little boy’s giggles and didn’t notice we had slowed down to watch the scene before us. The young boy was busy playing with left over cement block as mom watched on. The little boy would pile the blocks, move them around, stand back and look at mom for approval. Mom would then praise the little boy and clap.

I found such pleasure in the scene before us. I thought to myself, now there’s a mother truly spending time with her son. You could clearly see she was enjoying the boys creativity and being encouraging to him as well.

We knew she had noticed us when we heard the word, “Laowai”, which means foreigner. We all said hello and pointed to what the boy had done with the blocks, gave a little clap, and touched his head. Of course he shied away from us (it was Mike’s towering size and bald head, I’m sure of it… :)) and went to his mother. As we were walking away the little boy resumed playing with the blocks and I asked mom if I could take a picture. A quick nod from mom and I was able to get 2 quick shots (although not very good ones) before he went to mom again.  Enjoy!

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It’s a Hot Chinese Feast

Warning, It’s a hot dish said no one ever! Beware, when you’re invited out to dinner and the dishes have been pre-ordered. There’s no time to say 不辣 Bù là – which means no spice. The red pieces you see in the dishes are not small chopped up tomatoes or red bell peppers. Oh no, they are red hot chili peppers, some of the hottest I’ve ever had the misfortune of tasting. Beauty  of presentation is not beauty and tasty to the mouth.

Once you do the silly and childish thing of picking through your food and separating all the unknown items, the meal tends to be quite tasty and at times even delicious!

I like some spice in my food and I tend to add jalapeno to my pico de gallo (cold chunky salsa). Do you like spicy food? What is one of the spiciest  food you’ve ever tasted?

We’re Back In China

We had an amazing time in the good ol’ USA! Thirty one days was not nearly enough time to take off our shoes and relax. We worked hard while in the states with helping our daughter with her shop and working at the farm house getting it ready to sell. Life was busy and interesting. Don’t let me kid you though, we loved every minute of it.

Our only regret about our fantastic 31 days in the USA was the lack of time to spend with family and friends. We didn’t have time, ugh! Our time was literally full of working time in both Michigan and Indiana.

Our fantastic summer continues with our trip back to China where we reunited after only a short week (although it felt like a year) away from my wonderful husband Mike.

The advantage of returning to Luxu, China: The great Chinese food. The disadvantage of returning to China: The incredible HOT heat.

I’m out of space on wordpress to insert photo’s. As soon as I figure it out I’ll add photo’s. Much love to all.

Maria

 

 

Chinese Opera Singers

The following photo’s were taken at two different water towns near our home of Luxu. After doing a little research on Opera Singers, I found this article written by  to be the best and most informative on the subject. You can read the article, here.

An excerpt from her great article,”Chinese opera makeup is particularly fascinating and rich in meaning. A character with mostly red makeup or a red mask is brave and loyal. Black symbolizes boldness and impartiality. Yellow denotes ambition, while pink stands for sophistication and cool-headedness. Characters with primarily blue faces are fierce and far-seeing, while green faces show wild and impulsive behaviors. Those with white faces are treacherous and cunning – the villains of the show. Finally, an actor with only a small section of makeup in the center of the face, connecting the eyes and nose, is a clown. This is called xiaohualian, or the “little painted face.”

Enjoy!