Saturday, December 23, 2006

Finding the Funny Bone

hehe...on my way to increasing my humor...

The secret...

" happiness is a good sense of humor and a bad memory!" I read that on someone's MySpace page ... it holds some truth to it. So, as I learn to to find my humor and lose my memory the world is starting to look brighter.

Stuck in the Big V

random thoughts spewed across a screen for no particular purpose and no one's particular interest, save my own I guess. Blogs are great if you send out the address so that others can read them...I seem to have trouble with that step though. I think maybe a whole 5 people have access to this...

At any rate, here is sit in D & G's apartment on Dec. 23rd...2 days before Christmas...and I sit. Snow storms in Denver made it impossible to fly out the day before yesterday and the cancelled the morning flights, my flight, yesterday. Now all flights are running as normal (why but of course they are). So, due to the backlog of travellers and the overbooking of flights I am stranded in Vancouver until at least Dec. 25th. Yup...Christmas day.

I get to get up before Santa even finishes his rounds and head out to the airport to catch a flight that will take me to Omaha by 2:30ish pm. I want to complain. I want to yell, scream, and be frustrated. At least, I think I do. But, then again, whenever I think about how selfish my actions for not getting what I wanted are, I think of all those who are so much less fortunate than I. The fact that I can even afford to get on a plane is so much more than most. I have the time and freedom to travel and all I can think about doing is complaining. Good Grief.

I must be a real headcase. So, today I shall try to do some work and will hopefully have a chance to meet up with DC before he flies off to 'loops and then tomorrow it will be lunch at Naan with SS. Monday morning, bright and early I shall make my way to the airport and begin the journey. It shall all be but a distant memory to recall in a later year as something funny that happened on the way to Omaha.

Friday, December 08, 2006

Good ol' China ways

I have been working on preparing an application for the Canada-China Scholar Exchange Program. The process is more complicated than any of the other applications I have done so far. It would be wonderful to get as it would mean I could come and study in China for 4-12 months. However, I am required to have notorized copies of this and that, 5 copies of everything, a guarantor here in China, a medical check, and and idea of which school to study at, why and with whom. All this is do-able...except for anything that has to do with China.

It is the age old struggle of first finding the information then, once found, convincing the school officials that what you are asking can actually be done. I contacted ZJU and was told that I needed to have HSK 6 to enter the program. I responded by explaining that I didn't want to enrol as a grad student but would be under and exchange and would like to get in touch with one of the professors from the department of Sociology with whom I might be able to arrange something. I was again told that the key professor in the department could not speak English and, hence, HSK 6 was necessary. I responded again by requesting anyone within the department who could speak English and, if this individual was unable to assist me I understood and would ask for assistance from my Chinese colleagues in Hangzhou. Funny enough, the next message provided me with the name of a professor from the department who had written an article in English that I might be able to speak with.

When the answer is "no" here you can't stop pushing because you know that it really means "this is complicated and I would prefer not to deal with it so it is impossible".

PKU was slightly more helpful in that they responded positively. However, the email address to the Sociology deparment didn't work and I was told to get in touch with the webmaster (who may or may not be able to understand my request). ACK!

And now we know why everything here is "manman lai" (it will come slowly).

Tuesday, December 05, 2006


I have arrived!! I flew in on Saturday afternoon and M met me at the airport with a beautiful long stemmed rose. perfectly perfect. We had dinner at a great little Spanish restaurant and just enjoyed being in each others space again.

I have yet to get my bearings in this city. It is unfamiliar to me and it is huge. I have a Sbux - which is fundamentally important - and I can find food. Tonight I will get to see M's office and we will find somewhere in the area to eat.

I still have a paper to finish and a project to keep working on ... motivation - 0%. Requirement 100%. Hmmm...the yin and yang of life.

Friday, December 01, 2006

1 More Sleep

It is 12:18am. In a little over 12hours I will be on a plane about to take off for Beijing. YIIPPPEEEEE!!!!

Last night was a short night after having put together some materials for the research project I was working on, heading to bed at about 2:30am and then rising at 8:00am so that I could make my way up to the Uni to drop off some Xmassy giftos, fax some docs and mail some cards and a package before getting back to the house to grab my luggage and head to the PCL bus depot for the 1pm ferry sailing.

Once on the ferry, I settled myself into reading a good book (though I probably should have been working on my final paper - but I keep saying that). I bussed into vancouver, took a taxi to D&G's place and spent the afternoon chatting with G till D got home. We had a late dinner (9ish) and then D headed to bed around 10:30ish as he was exhausted.

Now I sit, writing this and preparing to try and find sleep. I will read a bit which may help. G has offered to drive me to the airport tomorrow morn (what a sweetie) which means a 9:45ish departure (not a bad hour). I think I am ready...whatever hasn't gotten finished will just have to not be done.

Sigh...1 more sleep, 1 more sleep, 1 more sleep...