2.18.2009

2.15.2009

Valentines Day Weekend

Sorry about the pictures... I can't get them to load... But I will keep trying. :)

FRIDAY
This weekend has been an adventurous one. On Friday we went with all of our ILP group to the TESCO, which is like a shopping market and has a bunch of stores around it. We went looking for either DVD or good deals where we could bargain. We didn’t really find much of either of those be we did find some very interesting people.
We passed probably 5-6 salons while we were out and most of the workers there we figured were guys, there were a few questionable ones ☺ Anyways all the works have ‘stylish’ hair. A.K.A crazy hair. We went in and got some pictures with them. Just to remind you of why there aren’t many pictures yet is because we don’t have the cord to get pictures off the camera but we did a take a few with the video camera and it worked out ok.
While in the salon, people/workers just keep popping out of nowhere. All had crazy hair and all wanted in the picture. This picture doesn’t even get a 4th of the people that were there or the crazy hair, but don’t worry I will be getting some more pictures of the stylish hair.
This other picture is of one of the shops behind TESCO, It was pretty crazy, lots of cars and lots of people.
There are canals all over the place here. The water is very gross but they all look so pretty, this picture doesn’t really capture it mostly because it is at night. But I thought it was a cool picture anyways.
And the other picture is of a building that we found, I don’t even know what it is but it reminds us of the Space Needle.
I will continue to get pictures so you can all see our new home for the next 4 Months.

SATURDAY
Happy Valentines day! ☺ Saturday was Valentines Day, It was an amazing day. Chad and I went exploring. We hoped on bus 70 and rode it to the very end. We didn’t really mean to but we just didn’t know where downtown Changzhou was, so we were just going to ride for a while and the next thing we knew everyone was getting off the bus.
We ended up at the train station, which ended but being a good thing that we found it.
We just walked around looking at everything. Chad bought me a rose on the street, first he tried to barter for one but the people told him no and put it back so we continued onward and found many other roses for sale.
When trying to get back on Bus 70 to go home we could exactly find the bus stop so we just keep walking for a while to find one. After about 45 minutes or so of walking we found it. While walking we found an outside pet store. There were rabbits, puppies, birds, big turtles, teeny tiny turtles, and fish. They were all really cute, I just tried to block my mind from knowing that these animals most likely aren’t going to be pets…
While observing (quickly I want to say that there are millions of scooters/vespas/ bikes here at everyone rides on) the people getting their ‘pets’ one guys grabbed two fully grown rabbits and shoved both into a little box thing on the back of his scooter. I was amazed that both fit in, I guess there is no other way to carry two rabbits home.
To end the day of love we treated out selves to a good dinner at Pizza Hut. It had a hint of fish somewhere in the pizza but nonetheless was delicious.

SUNDAY
Sorry I didn’t realize this would be such a long post, but quickly on Sunday we went to the Suzhou branch. It was an adventure getting there but the Branch President came from church to pick us up from the train station and we made it for the last 30 minutes of Church. It was amazing! It was so nice to feel like home again and to converse we people that are somewhat similar to ourselves. It was a fairly large branch, bigger than I expected. After church we went to the Branch Presidents house and had dinner. I can’t remember when food tasted so good. Chad and I went to a youth fireside with the Branch President, it was amazing to see such strong youth, and they had peanut better cookies after ☺ huge bonus.

Well I hope all is going well for everyone
Love you lots
JoAnna

2.12.2009

Address

Here is our address here at the school:

Tsing Ying International School
No. 5 Xi Hu Road
Wu Jin High - Technolodge District Changzhou
Jiang Su, China 21300

Any food or supplies would be greatly accepted :)

Night on the Town

Last night we had our first night out on the town.
It was so fun. First Chad played basketball with 5 other teachers at the school. He was defiantly the tallest out on the court. After the game the whole ILP group of us and 4 other girls went to eat dinner because the meals here at the cafeteria just weren’t cutting it the last few days and we needed substances. We went to a little hole in the wall restaurant where we just wanted Kung Pow Chicken and fried rice. In the translation books we found Kung Pow translation but no such luck with fried, and the menus don’t have any pictures and are completely in Chinese. So we ordered 4 plates of Chicken.
A few minutes later a group of engineers from General Electric came and sat at the table next to us and they spoke English. So we had him order us some fried rice and he soon became our friend. He got Chad’s email address so that he could practice his English some more. It was an interesting experience. We left with full stomachs and happy faces.
Next we walked to the market and got to experience a nightly ritual that was possibly may favorite thing so far.
Every night the older generations go to the market and dance! It was so much fun. On one side is couples dancing and on the other the ladies do line dances that are rad! I couldn’t help but think of my mom the entire time. Mom I know you would have loved it! I must say I was pretty good at all the line dances, I must have dancing genes in me.
It was so much fun.
We have videos of it, but the internet isn't quite fast enough to download them so we will keep trying

Love you all

2.09.2009

We Made it!!

We are here in Changzhou China and very happy. We started our trip with very long plane rides, equaling out to 18 hours, only to get to Hong Kong. We stayed in a hotel for 2 nights and got a half day tour of Hong Kong. It was amazing. We really had no idea that so many people could coexist in one place. It was crazy!
On Sunday we left and flew to Shanghia, where a teacher at the school, named King, came and picked us up. We rode on the bus for 3 hours to Changzhou. I didn't know cars could get so close to each other without crashing. But we made it safe. We went to a resturant that was way awesome. King ordered about 5 different dishes that he knew we would like and he was right, it was like American Chinese food. So good.
We got to the school and into our apartment room and there were two big suprises. 1) We were told we would have a western toilet.... but suprise we don't, so we now need to get use to squatters. 2) our bed is a 1/2 inch pad on a wood slab... the biggest complant so far is that you wake up with a dead arm and leg because blood circulate gets cut off.
Oh and one more thing... The food is ok but still needs a little getting use to.
Chad has 2 hard core points. first for trying Chicken Foot.... second for eating Pig Lung.
JoAnna has 0 hard core points. I couldn't even bring my self to get a plate of dinner last night cause it didn't smell so great. But Breakfast is good/ok (atleast for me, Chad isn't such a fan). It is rice oatmeal stuff. Rice poriage. Stuff. I don't know how to explain it. I took a picture of it but we left our cord to get pictures off our camera home so we may need to get that shipped to us :)
Anyway we are just trying to get teaching stuff figured out. I will keep you posted on how things plan out.
Love you all

2.03.2009

We are on Our Way

This is a picture of the tallest pagoda. Located in Changzhou.

So after a few set backs... Changing our city twice and the possibility of a few days delay... We have a destination and a time to leave!
We leave February 4, 2009 at 9:05 pm, Mountain Standard Time. We will fly to San Fran then to Taipei, Taiwan then to Hong Kong. We will stay a few days there then fly to our final destination.... Changzhou.
It is about an hour away from Shanghai, and looks way cool.
We are very excited ( see below) to finally be on our way! Wish us luck and the next time you here from us we will be Chinese :)
Loves