Hey all, I'm not dead, just still without the Internet. It actually works for Saul, but not for Silvia, so the two of us just haven't had it. I'm working a lot, lot more, painting, studying, etc. Tomorrow I'm going to Tianjin, a city right outside of Beijing, with some friends to see an Austrian, who I don't know, perform something before he flies back to his homeland. Vague. I'll try to be more regular, but Silvy and I have no idea how to fix our internet.
We changed our visas, which are now six month F visas, which is a business visa. It's much smaller and faker looking than the visas you get outside of China.
My new job is wonderful. I've been working for the past three weeks with a company that makes online video games called "A Perfect World." My students are all management at the company, and I really enjoy all of them. My lessons are all centered around very American cultural things like garage sales, fast food, road trips, barbecues, etc. but add lots of new sentence structure and vocabulary. The students seems to love it, but I'm worried about losing momentum. Any ideas?
Tragedy: We bought a kitten off the street, all orange and yellow. He got sick in only a few days, and when we took him to a vet with all our Chinese books, we struggled with our bad Chinese and her bad English just to get the information that he had worms and will die. We gave him medicine three times a day, and really tried, but he died yesterday in a heap near Silvia's shoe nook and we buried him with his new green turtle cat toy. I'm very sad about this. Pets don't last in Beijing.
Other highlights of the last few weeks: eating enormously delicious piles of meat, bread, tomato and potato at our fav Xinjiang place, (Arabic Chinese) watching movies, scary police stuff, hutong Chinese lessons, oatmeal with guava, local, completely exotic, fruit sold in carts around our place, skewered quail eggs with "stinky" sauce, working 9 to 5, tofu soaked in duck's blood, some improvement with my painting skill, wildflowers, Masa, surprise visits, Beijing duck, a steady subway commute, teaching fairly well behaved little monsters on Thursdays, dinner at dazhongsi, etc., etc., etc...
I'm thinking of everyone.