Well I am not really sure how to summarize the last few daysNow I can sit quietly with the rain pounding on the windows outside and try and collect my thoughts which are nevertheless swirling around like crazy with all that has happened.
It has been a rollercoaster of a ride in many ways.Now we are comfortably ensconced in our little 3 room apartment in Lin’an,which is an hour ride from Hangzhou,which is an hour ride from Shanghai.On Saturday we left Shanghai.The driver that the school had sent to pick us up at our hotel arrived about 2 hours late because he had waited at the wrong hotel,across the road. Hardly surprising,since the hotel had nearly the same name and was at number 70,where our hotel was number 7.
Anyway he was nice and took us on the 3 hour ride to the University campus,where we were met by three delightful smiling people called Bruce,Wendy and Diana. They were going to be our guardian angels for the next few days getting us settled in our apartment,fixing our mobile phones,getting our internet connection sorted and taking us out for meals.
They showed us where the campus supermarkets are located,where the ATM is ,where the good cafeterias are and so on.Some things went smoothly others took more time,but always these helpers were charming and smiling.
Bruce became our “personal aid” rushing over to our flat at all hours to help us.
It can be a bit overwhelming not being able to read anything ,but the campus is beautiful,the people lovely and we are optimistic.
Wednesday will be the first day of classes.I am teaching 18 hours a week,nearly all British and European Literature,so I have no idea at all what to expect.Everyone assures me it will be fine. There are several other English teachers here,all younger than us.They are also friendly and helpful and it is looking great.WE even managed to go to a restaurant across from the campus today and order food alone (with no pictures on the menu) .Next week we will also begin Chinese lessons and I hope that will help a lot.
WE didn’t manage to get any cash out of the ATM today but hopefully tomorrow we will be more successful.