Saturday, February 16, 2008

February 12th: Checked out of our very nice four star hotel room. We hired a business car to take us from Guanzhou to Foshan bus station for about 45 US dolars. Where we would meet Ken (our Guide from our work). We got to our appartment it was very dirty. We actually live in Nanhai which is very close to Foshon. Ken got us two pillows and two comforters. Ken showed us around Nanhai and Foshon. He then put us on a bus back to Nanhai and then we got lost but we found our way home.

February 13th: Bought cleaning supplies, cleaned our gross apartment. took all day, Very nice now. Will post photos when I can! We made it our own, rearranged furniature. Bed as hard as cardboard!
February 14th: Ate breakfaast at Cafe de coral( big food chain here). had an american breakfast. My scrambled eggs weren't cooked all the way but I was hungry so I ate it.Valentines dayisn't as big here because it is during the chinese holiday season. Ken called us after eating and had us meet him at the apartments where we met Dave, the canadien man. Very nice guy. He's is his 50's. Very canadian! We walked around Foshan and Nanhai. We had to take some more passport photos for what I don;t know.Dave lost his phone and couldn't access his mooney so we had to help him all day long. I met a cutelittle girl about 6 yearsoldin the market place while sitting there waiting. Her name was Ting Ting. She knew her ABC's and some English. She was sooo cute!. I drew a picture of her and she drew one of me. She kept pointingto me and saying Top Fashion! amongst some other chinese words. She also gave me some seeds to eat.When we were done helping Dave out we split off and I bought a coat and a round brush and a hair dryer. Mine didn't work here! oh well! We ate at KFC after walking 5 million miles thatday. Wentr home and watched last of the Mohicans and ate dumplings.
February 15th: Shower didn't work so I took an old fashioned one where I boiled water. Did my hair for the first time. It was nice to actually do myhair with a blow dryer. Did my first load of laundry. We have a washing machine but we have to line dry our clothes. theres a line on our balcony to hang our wet clothes on a hanger. We Ate breakfast at cafe de coral with Dave but had to hurry back becaseu the water was going to be delivered. We had been waitingf for our purified water since tuesday! You can't even brush your teeth with the water. Nor cook. ONly shower and clean. Our landlord came over and showed us how to turn on the hot water for the shower. It was a matter of flipping a flip. We felt reallystupid.We made dinner thatnight. Some Ramen noodles and Dumplings and rice. Sounds fattening but man was it gooood! We watched "failure to launch" Our apartment gets really reallycold at night so I found an old T shirt, cut slits along the sides, tied the slits together and filled it with some rice I bought here. and put it in the microwave. We use them all the time now. I made one for me and one for Nate.They stay warm for about an hour. long enough to put you to sleep warm. I felt like McGuyver.

February 16th: Made first breakfast at home. Eggs and toast. Very american. Explored our neighborhood, found some more stores to shop from, an art store, some salons. Walked to walmart and saw Dave there. Found Peanut butter and Jelly and honey! Ate lunch ata Japanese Restaurant for about 10 us dollars. It would have costed $50 in the states.Came home and cleaned soem more. made some soup. Found another English channel! Two so far.

China is so Different. Each city seems to be different. The transportation is crazy here. Bus drivers are crazy butitsfun! We saw four grown men on a put put scooter. We hear fireworks atall hours of day and night. Smells different here. McDonalds and KFC's everywehere. but they are more expensive than the nicer restaurantsifnot the same price. Our apartments are actually very nice. The grounds of our apartment is very beautiful! We live on the 8th floor.Theres no purchasing tax or tipping. We are celebrities here! Seriously. Everyone stares at you! Everyone!!!! Lots of rich, lots of poor. TV programs are so funny and cheesey and generic. I have to go but we will write later! sorry if the words run together or aren't spelled correctly. had to type very fast! will post later todayis Sunday and we have alot to do. We weren't able to make it to church but we will! We are really looking forward to it.This is actually the first day we were able to find somewhere that had internet. So we had to take advantage of it. Love everyone! Keep in touch!
Nate and Krystal

Monday, February 11, 2008

China Rules!

Hey everyone. We have made it to China. Krystal and I are at the present in a really nice room on the 13 floor of the Mandarin Hotel in Guangzhou. We got a call from the desk about a half an hour ago telling us, in very broken English, that we needed to vacate our room because of some sewer backup on the 12th floor. Now we are in a busines sweet with our own computer, two 32 inch TV's and a living room. It's really nice for the 48 dollars we paid for it. By the way, we do get one English channel, BBC World, so we feel right at home and can stay up with the elections, I mean news on that side of the world. It has been a little chilly here, acutally a little cooler than usual. It is really humid so it feels a lot cooler than it acutally is.
Walking, who likes walking? We do. We have been walking for the past 4 days. We walked all over Hong Kong, and now we are on our way to walking all over the mainland. Speaking of walking, we walked, acutally took a journey by foot, to The New Territories in northern Hong Kong to find the Temple. I had seen it on google map before we left for our trip so I figured I could find it. We did, but it was closed for the Chinese New Year. Oh well, at least we got to see it. It is really nice to see the church over here.
The people have all been really nice and helpful. A lot of folks new a little English in Hong Kong but not many here. Good thing I know some Mandarin or we would have never found our Hotel in Hong Kong or here.
We have taken tons of pictures and have posted some below so check them out and we will keep you updated. We move into our apartment in Foshan tomorrow. AHHH... home sweet home. We love you guys and thanks for thinking about us.

Thursday, January 3, 2008

Moving to China!

That's right. Krystal and I will be in the great Middle Country, Zhong Guo, as the Chinese call it, very soon. We are both teaching at an English language training school in southern China. The School, Lingdong, is in the city of Foshan in the Guangdong province, about 3 hours north of Hong Kong by train. I have done a little bit of research on the area and Krystal and I are very excited to go.
Guangzhou, one of the neighboring cities and capitol of Guangdong province, is know for it's crazy cuisine which includes but is not limited to: dog, cat, snake, turtle, frogs, roaches, scorpions and whatever else flies, walks, or swims. Turtle and frogs can be purchased at the local Foshan Super Wal- Mart!
The weather is really nice there but very humid. Foshan is about the same longitude as Hawaii and the average rainfall is about 6 to 8 feet per year, an average about 20 more inches than Seattle and Portland. Needless to say, we won't be needing any chapstick. It's mostly warm all year round.
Anyway, Krystal and I will be flying out on February 6th and arrive 36 hours later in Hong Kong. We just happen to be arriving on the first night of the Chinese New Year and will be staying in Hong Kong for at least 3 nights, all of which are part of the New Year celebration. We booked a 4 star hotel in Kowloon, Hong Kong, for $468.00 a night! Good things that's Hong Kong dollars, it converts to about $60 U.S.. Not bad for a 4 star hotel on Chinese New Year in Hong Kong.
So we will soon be in China and are looking forward to the culture shock we will undoubtedly experience. I know enough Putonghua (Mandarin) to survive and look forward to becoming more fluent in the language. Most Chinese speak Cantonese in the south but pretty much all know Mandarin as well, it being the official language of China. So it will still be a great place to learn and study the language. The writing is all the same as well.
Oh yes, one of the 8 branches of the church currently in China happens to be 15 miles away in Guangzhou. We are already in contact with President Yeung, of the Guangzhou 1st (and only) branch, and are looking forward to making new friends in the church in China.
We will miss everyone but are excited to travel to the very foreign land of China. We will keep everyone informed via this blog so check it once in a while if you want to know what we're up to. I will try to keep in updated at least once a week.

Until we meet again,
Da Jia,
Zai Jian!