Friday, November 24, 2006


So it's been a while since I last posted, and the main reason is: I've been busy. But also, I'm trying to post pictures and it's taking F-O-R-E-V-E-R. Blogger really has a shouldn't take more than a minute to upload a picture - a minute is already way too long! Plus, often blogger won't even let me upload pictures - it just doesn't work! So it's very frustrating.

Lately I've been preparing for my mid-term exams. I had four last week - spoken spoken (dialogue with a partner), reading & writing, listening, and spoken written (a written exam for our speaking class). I did OK, not used to getting such low marks, but I was pleased in a way because considering I've only been really studying for two months my results weren't bad. I received average marks.

Learning Chinese is hard. It's hard to remember all those characters. Memorizing them comes a lot easier now (I'm more used to it) but then right after the tests I tend to forget most of them...and continuing to use them is near impossible since I'm learning around 120 new words a week (that's on average 25 new words a day - when I learned how to teach English I was told the maximum a student can realistically take in is around 7 or 8 new words a day).

I was sad to hear that my dog Cleo died. She was 13 years old (her birthday's in October). She died contentedly and without pain, thankfully. It was peaceful.

I'm excited to hear that my brother will probably come visit me end of December. Yay!

Because I wrote about those people trying to flee from Chinese mountains, I can't view my site anymore, so I'm going to cut that part out and see if I can view my site again.

Tuesday, October 31, 2006

Pictures are up!

Take a lazy afternoon and check out CBC's photo galleries at your leisure. I recommend "World Press Photo '06" - the best photos of 2005.

I now have the cable that goes from my camera to the computer, but no time and real motivation to put up the long-awaited photos from my trip to the South during the October 1st Golden Week Holiday. So here are some pictures of my cute roommate, who - big news! big news! - found herself a nice boyfriend, so he's either in our apartment everday or she's out at his place (he lives off campus; goes to another university) so I don't see much of her anymore....

Min Ji doing her favourite passtime: cell-phoning! Yes...she did have two cell phones at one time.
Her boyfriend. And I did have a pic of the two of them, but blogger's screwing up and I can't post it.

This was the week I came back from my trip to the South. On a Wednesday I gathered a few people I had met to come together for some drinks. We went to the campus pub. To my right is a Russian girl, who's roommate is the other white girl on the side (also Russian) - I've been clubbing with them a couple times. And I went shopping one day with the Japanese girl beside the blonde. The rest are Japanese guys, except for the Korean in a purple top, who I met in the elevator... The guy to my left (in white), is my neighbour - he lives in the room next to mine! And the guy beside him (in black) lives on my floor.

Wednesday, October 25, 2006

Seductive Shorts

:-) No, not seductive shorts as in the clothing shorts (which can or cannot be seductive, according to your personal taste)...seductive shorts as in short movie shorts. Prepared in order to be eventually downloaded on mobile phones (AKA cell phones), ten directors were asked to make two-minute shorts that would be able to be looked at on the small cell phone screen. Click on the link to watch them!

Tuesday, October 24, 2006

Languages in Canada

Well, I guess it comes as no surprise that the top languages spoken in Canadian households are English, French and then "Chinese languages" (that encompasses a lot!). Check out CBC's website: click on each province and find out what the top 5 languages are spoken there.

I had a nice week-end. You?

Friday, October 20, 2006


It has been a while...I'm waiting for the cable between my camera and my computer (which I left in Guangdong Province and my student's cousin's new wife brought back to Beijing with her, but I have yet to get it back from her...) to download pix of the wedding and show you what my trip to the south of China was like.

In the meantime: I watched a movie (in Beijing - fake DVD) I had forogotten I had already watched while in France on vacation five years ago called Yamikasi. It's about a group of guys who climb buildings...without any equipment. Well, these type of people really do exist, and if you hurry and watch today's news in Marseille, France, you'll catch a glimpse of today's Yamikasis... Really quite interesting. If you visit this site too late (maybe it's changed), you can see some pix of what they do:

Guess it's not only "residents only." :-)
They use the urban city as their playground - nothing is too challenging, they can do it all!

In other news: on campus I watched a group of Chinese workers build a wall around a future building site. The wall was made of bricks and didn't look very strong, but then it was plastered in a black cement-like material which made it smooth and alright-looking, and then they painted it a bright green, which made it quite respectable and all. However, just a slight problem - they hadn't let in the machines that were going to help the workers build the future site!!! So how do you solve such a problem??? China you simply break the newly-built wall down! Yes indeed, they broke a huge hole in their wall to let through the machines and simply built the wall right back up afterwards - and cemented it and painted it (I suppose they'll break it up again once the building is done to let the machines out funny...). Ahlala, China, China, China...

Tuesday, October 10, 2006

My friend is on TV!

Do you remember Eva from last year? I met up with her this year before she left for France, where she now teaches Chinese in a French high school. She's on French TV! She's on during the fourth story on the news about the hundreds of foreigners coming to France to teach their native language to French students. When I was nineteen I did that in a Parisian suburban high school....

Monday, October 09, 2006

Stop Global Warming

Help Blue Man stop global warming...

Takes a while to load, be patient.

October 1st Holiday

October 1st is a national holiday - Mao Ze Dong officially declared the beginning of the People's Republic of China on this day in 1949. Chinese people get a week vacation to celebrate the birth of their great nation. I left early (September 26th), missing four days of class, and took a plane to Guanzhou, in the south of China (Guangdong province) and then a six-hour bus ride to Zhan Jiang, my former student's hometown, where his family warmly welcomed me. Over the next week, we prepared my student's cousin's wedding, which took place October 2nd. On the night of October 1st, I was sick to my stomach, threw up a bunch of times, and went to the hospital from 6-9:30 AM, missing the very important part of the wedding where the groom, with his male buddies in tow, woos the bride and her bridesmaids and takes them from her chambers (a hotel room) and sweeps her around town, using nine cars and taking photographs in nice-looking places. I missed that. But I was there for the dinner....

The day after the wedding we left for an aunt's house, who lives near Guilin, a famous back-packers' destination. It's set in a beautiful location - super strange-looking but very beautiful hills. We took a 4-hour boat ride down a river. I took around 40 pictures - and you'll think they all look the same! Don't worry, I'll edit....

It was also a grastronomical experience. I ate everything from congealed pig's blood to dog and horse meat to miniature crabs (shell and all)'s tails! And it was all quite tasty.

Left the line that goes from my camera to the computer, so I need to buy a new one. Until then, no pictures I'm afraid! The magic number of pictures allowed on one post is 9. We'll see how many posts it takes to show the pix from my vacation...I took over 1 GB of pictures!