Thursday, March 19

Touched By The Chinese

Today I was called out around 4pm to help a friend study English. She wants a perfected accent so that she can find a new job. She also wants to study at BYU. I took the bus and the metro in complete la-la land. Singin in my head and dancin as non-obviously as possible O.O We ate first and then started a battle with her TOEFL book haha

She actually decided to rip up the book in sections! Anyway we studied in a place called English First. This is really supposed to be a school where you pay and take some classes and join English clubs, but they have the place set up to where people from where ever can come study. I envy China for having these things...and I'll get a picture for you next time.
We spent about 2 hours going over an article in the text (while chatting with her friends in between). I think that if she keeps up her...will to learn and pace, she should be able to pass that test by the end of this summer!

I wish I could take the HSK test this year, but the test is in June or July and I leave in May...early May. I'm thinking that if I have to (want to) I'll come back next year just to take the test. (It'd be above my means to do it this summer.)****

On the metro ride home I decided to do my U.S.-Chinese relations reading. Then I switched to a bus that would lead me to the mcdonalds at the end of my street. (I was craving french fries only. I hate mcdonalds.) I was messing with the worker again, because usually people who work in these American fast foods will automatically throw out their English, but he was so shy, that 2dys ago when I first walked in he just looked at me. Shy smile with no words! Then I ordered in English!! (just to be difficult). All of his co-workers were like "You should help her out! Speak English!" whatever whatever.lol I decided to cut him some slack and throw out some Chinese. [Oh how quickly you relax when you hear your own language.] He confessed that he just can't bring himself to talk to foreigners in English. Oh well! Even though today he didn't say a word when I got there, I ordered in Chinese and only teased him a little. ;p

I decided to walk the 15min back to the house. (So I could scope out the night market. My clothes are getting holes in them. Not cool -_-) I ran from the bridge to the complex gate (it was a 1min run haha I don't like running). And to my surprise a security guard walked out and asked if i spoke Chinese.

I said yea as i kept walking. He says, "No! don't keep walking!!" It wasn't a command. It was a wish. I stopped and asked why. (being difficult again) He said he really wanted to talk.
We talked about working in America and here and schooling, etc. I was surprised at how much we'd covered in such a short time. I found out that I'm a year older than him and he wasn't going to enroll in college because he needs to work. 12hrs a day. No paid off days. As he put it "No work. No food."
I had asked him why he didn't learn a foreign language, since he likes to talk to foreigners. He said learning English is of no use to him. He won't ever work with enough foreigners. He will go to another city tomorrow to find a new job. I told him to spend some time doing self study and find his strengths and then change jobs. He expressed that I was better than him and that he just couldn't do it. I asked him what his dream job was. 'What do you want to be in life?' He didn't know.

[He was sooooo excited to just talk to me.]

I've had a few conversations like this with my Chinese peers and I can't help but feel bad. because I know it's going to be harder for them while they are here. There are just too many people to be considered 'exceptional'. In America we're told that it's ok to just figure out life when we are grown, but i seriously think you should think about it in at least middle school. Why so young? Because in a world that has already produced so many products, geniuses and ideas, it's only going to get more challenging. No matter what I must do something that helps my peers to be able to live comfortably. Our parents and grandparents and great grandparents have done what they were going to do. We also must do what we can do.

I would cry, but I'll pray instead. The lord is still on our side.

3 comments:

cocoluvsjapan said...

Aww, I'm soo jealous here if someone doesn't want to talk to u at the register they'll put up the closed sign on u i'm not even kidding people here are so not progressive in their international ways... but that's cool about China though they seem so progressive I was discussing this with a friend I'll send u a message!

JamasiaN said...

They put up a CLOSED sign!!!
That is too out of line.

Here they almost group huddle to see who has the best english, then break. Then I speak chinese and the whole herd comes back haha

Juanita said...

No "closed" signs here in South Korea, lol. When I go to certain chain restaurants (McDonald's, Burger King, Pizza Hut, Baskin Robbins, etc.)the youngsters (reluctantly) try out their English on me when I order something. Ironically, when my food is ready or when I pay for the order, they switch back over to Korean. It's hilarious!

 
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