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Little Russia and finding that Western store again...

Beijing Travel Blog

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sunset from the balcony

Vacation is over, and the work begins.  But before, there was another trip across town…further across town where Librette used to live.  She said something about pants and hems, but all I cared about was internet café, DVD store and getting the wireless router for the apartment.  At the internet place, I couldn’t open my teaching schedule since they didn’t have Excel, and that was the primary reason I was there.  But I spent my full hour on the ‘net, checking out my sites (MLS, Revolution, MySpace, Facebook, Travbuddy, etc).  Just before my time was up Librette and her mom came back from their errands to use the internet (why couldn’t we all do it at once so I didn’t have to sit there bored out my skin).  Anyway, her mom was still doing stuff, and we went to the DVD place.  I did good- only 4 compared to her 6.

sunset from the balcony
  And I spent a whole whopping 28¥ ($3.72 US).  The four movies- Top Gun, Transformers, Live Free or Die Hard (the reason why I kept screwing up the New Hampshire license plates) and a German movie called Das Leben der Anderen (The Lives of Others).

I know, I know- Top Gun?  Besides being the only good Tom Cruise movie, I just couldn’t help myself.   And now I’m on the lookout for more.

That was the end of the vacation.  I started (really started) on Tuesday.  I had my first solo Face-to-Face (F2F) and it went well.  I also did two classes about Weddings Around the World.  It wasn’t until too late that I figured out how to put videos in my PowerPoint presentations.

Come to Beijing... Learn Russian!
  Westlife’s The Rose is a perfect video for the class since it goes from wedding to reception, two topics covered  in the lesson.  I also had a round of Games Club, and we played Taboo for an hour.

Wednesday was another round of World Weddings and the video didn’t go over as well as I’d hoped.  I’ll keep it in since I have two more classes of that.  I had another workshop about Socializing, and it went better than expected.  Since no one booked my F2F, I didn’t do it.  The rest of the time was spent preparing and working on my lesson on the Czech Republic.  We also had a career development meeting and we worked with PowerPoint and I got to show them a little about Vermont.  Made me crave maple syrup though.

Come to Beijing... Learn Russian! Hopefully the Russian's better than the English.
  Not so weird or unexpected.

Finally tried a moon pie after three weeks and it wasn’t that bad.  Dry without much flavor, but it wasn’t that bad.  Definitely edible.  Glad I have them because if nothing else, they’re food!

Something I knew, but this random thought popped into my head on the walk home from the subway- Walking and crossing streets in Beijing may be an extreme sport, but I can’t think of anything more extreme than driving in Beijing.  New Yorkers wouldn’t have the balls to do it (no offense to any New Yorkers).  I’m definitely surprised by the lack of accidents, and almost surprised by the lack of road rage.  Must be all the tea and Tai Chi.

From Jenny Lou's, minus the pancake mix and spaghetti sauce

One week down the drain.  There were some low points, but there were high points.  And one of those high points was Daniel (a foreign teacher from Canada) who showed me where Jenny Lou’s is.  Actually, there’s more than one in Beijing, but he took me to the one nearest to the school by Ritan.  We were looking for beer and snacks for my class on the Czech Republic, so I didn’t really get to look around much.  But I did find Kraft Mac and Cheese.  There’s also a kepab place next door, which is where we got lunch.

Not that either of us ate at the school.  By the time we got back, I had to finish prepping for 2 classes, so my lunch and root beer sat by the computer I’d taken over that day.  And during the office hour I had, I spent most of that looking around for an apple pie or apple strudel.  Then I had my Culture Club class on Praha and a F2F, then it was time to go home…

Where I ate my “lunch” with a beer and watched Live Free or Die Hard (not too bad, not at all) and Transformers (did some fast-forwarding, but it was still pretty good.  I have a newfound appreciated for dirty “soldier” Josh Duhamel).

Day off…spent the morning getting my internet fixed, then spent the afternoon at Wangfujing at a foreign language bookstore and then wondering about Ritan looking for Jenny Lou’s since I was coming from the opposite direction than Daniel and I took.  After wondering around Little Russia for a while, I finally found it. 

I really need to remember that I don’t have to buy everything I see.  And I forgot what I’d gone in there for- the Mac and Cheese.  But I bought plenty of other things, including root beer, ginger ale, spaghetti and sauce, a can of tuna fish, a can of Chef Boyardee Spaghetti and meatballs (in case of food emergency), pudding and pancake mix.  And the rumors of Ben and Jerry’s are true- I found some!  Didn’t buy any, but it’s here.  And Pop Tarts. 

Being in Little Russia made me wonder something- how is it that I'm here and Christina isn't?  After all, she took Russian forever and Chinese... and I can managed 3 words in Chinese and about the same in Russian.  Isn't that ironic... *cue Alanis Morisette*

Yes, that was a HEAVY backpack on the way back home.  Not sure how long it took, but it seemed like it took forever!  My back, legs and feet hurt so much!  Feels a little now since I’ve been on the couch surfing. 

Time for pancakes, a movie, then it’s a shower and bed since I have to work tomorrow.

cbrzustoski says:
Oh yeah and take some pics of your apt and the city! All I've seen in your blog are Chinese Chef Boyardee cans and Oreo cookie packets! LOL
Posted on: Oct 16, 2007
cbrzustoski says:
Hey. I still can't believe you're in China and I'm not. That might be cuz I've STUDIED Chinese and know I could never function in China since it's so frickin hard. You must be more adventurous than me. :) Keep bloggin'!
Posted on: Oct 16, 2007
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sunset from the balcony
sunset from the balcony
sunset from the balcony
sunset from the balcony
Come to Beijing... Learn Russian!
Come to Beijing... Learn Russian!
Come to Beijing... Learn Russian!
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Come to Beijing... Learn Russian!…
From Jenny Lous, minus the pancak…
From Jenny Lou's, minus the panca…
Beijing
photo by: Deats