Monday, February 8, 2010

Action Packed Spring Festival?

AKIC CNY Plans starting to fall in place
Andis will have a week off from February 13th to 19th.  From the Sixteenth to the Eighteenth, he, Jenny, and Tony will go to Beixing -- J's hometown.
The AKIC Weekend before the CNY
This will be spent, it seems, prepping for the CNY.  The wife, Tuesday afternoon, will get her hair done.  Tony and his father will get their hair cut.
Letter of Invitation
This local person wanted Andis to write him a letter of invitation for a Visa to go to Canada.  The local was going to Toronto, he said, for a visit.  Looking into the invitation letter process, Andis saw that the inviter would have to provide a copy of  an i.d., proof of income in Canada, an address with a list of occupants, and a Canadian phone number.  The problem with this for Andis was that he currently didn't have an address or phone number of his own in Canada,.  He could, in theory, ask his sister, but he didn't want to drag her into it because it inconvenience her to no end.  And Andis wasn't comfortable with having to lie.  As well, Andis had never been to Toronto.  Andis tried to steer the local to doing the process correctly, giving links with the relevant information to the local and encouraging him to get his so-called Toronto friend to write the letter of invitation. 
After doing this, the local phoned Andis back to say that his friend couldn't send him a letter of invitation because some document this friend had, had expired.  Whatever the document was, the local's explanation didn't make any sense.  And the local persisted in his desire to have Andis or one of Andis's relatives write the letter of invitation.  Andis suspected that all along, the local didn't have a friend to invite him to Toronto, so he told him to go away.
Andis felt remorseful after telling the local to get stuffed, but it seemed that he had no choice.  The local seemed all-of-a-sudden to be very dodgy.
Monday's Teaching
Andis thought to himself that It would be nice if you could separate your work-self from the family-self from the self-that-just-encountered-a-dodgy-person-and-so-feel-very-angry self, but Andis had always found this compartmentalization hard to pull off.
Right after telling the local to get  stuffed, Andis went to do an English Corner, and feeling irked because of the local,  Andis noticed that all the students in the corner seemed to take  on the aspect of lying and cheating hyenas.  Not one student, Andis noticed, seemed to actually be interested in speaking in English -- they were looking to be entertained.  One student was sitting at a table with his back to Andis which struck Andis, at that moment, as being particularly rude.  Andis, stood silently for a two minutes, to see if the students took notice of him.  Funny how it was that as soon as some students realized it was time to shut-up, other students would start to talk.  Andis further noticed the students who seemed to reluctant to use English and the ones who wouldn't listen to an explanation of what a word meant before consulting their electronic dictionaries.
Andis was having a hard time, compartmentalizing.  But he did at least realize it.  He was, at least, stepping back from his moody self in his mind.
It was a half-hour before the storm, in the mind of Andis, passed.  Andis got annoyed at the answers he was getting.  One girl told him Chairman Mao was a saint -- Andis got onto the topic after mentioning the Super Bowl, which maybe one student knew about (but only after some prodding).  Dropping the saint line-of-questioning, very quickly, Andis went onto the topic of mysteries.  He had a hard time getting students to tell him was the mystery of a thing they said was mysterious was.  "What was the mystery of ghosts?", Andis asked a student who said that ghosts were a mystery.  Andis thought the English Corner would never end.
But the storm, like all storms preceding it, passed.  The last twenty minutes, Andis was in the zone he wanted to be in.  He found the students who wanted to talked and had intelligent things to say.

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