Showing posts from June, 2017

End of Semester Music

我祈祷拥有一颗透明的心灵 和会流泪的眼睛 给我再去相信的勇气 越过谎言去拥抱你。 I pray for a transparent soul and eyes that know how to shed tears Give me the courage to believe again and cross the lies to embrace you. I asked Phila to recommend some Chinese music for me to listen to -- as I'm always telling students to listen to English music, I figured I should listen to my own advice! These lines from 夜空中最亮的星 ("The Brightest Star in the Night Sky") feel very fitting as we come to the end of the semester. Miriam and I have been spending a lot of time hanging out with students who we've gotten to know this year, and that leads to a lot of laughter. It also leads times like last night when, much to my own surprise, I lie awake crying, my heart wrecked at the sadness and pain that undergirds the lives of these people I love so dearly. It's one thing to read the statistics about the crisis of left-behind children in China and to mourn at the brokenness of the world; it'


As I think about the summer in America, I keep noticing things from living in China that I've assimilated and wondering how they're going to work out for me in the US.... Being a little grossed out by PDA.  Sure, my students who are dating are all over each other, but that's because they're kids.  And girls hold hands all the time with their female friends -- I hold hands with female students -- but I'm not sure that I've ever seen an actual adult couple in China making much physical contact at all in public.  Certainly not kissing.  And I was super weirded out the other day to see two of the foreign teachers kissing.  (And then I was weirded out that I had been weirded out.) Using the word "play" to mean "hang out with friends."  As in, "I don't have any plans, I just want to play with you."  Sure, it's grammatically correct.  But the connotations aren't exactly the same... I've tried warning students that

What I love: this apartment

It's often when I'm in the shower, oddly enough, that I'm overwhelmed with happiness for the space that I get to call home.  I love it.  I love that I'm able to plan to stay in this same apartment for three years; that will easily be a record time that I've lived anywhere since I left for Geneva the day after my 18th birthday. There are the quirks of this apartment, although they're very few and not hard to live with: dripping faucets, a water heater that doesn't believe in heating if it's raining, a stubborn door handle, a very narrow kitchen.  I can handle all of those things.  (As long as I remember not to try to shower when it's raining.   Yikes. ) I love having this place to come home to. I love having this place to invite students to -- to cook together, to have parties, to watch movies, to do homework, to hang out and talk. The summer is getting closer and closer.  24 days until I'll be on my way to America, and that feels so