Too many #Bikes!

20 Jun

The #bike faze in #Beijing is a little crazy right now.  Never thought you could overdo bicycles, but #Peking might have just managed it.  There is NO sidewalk – Everywhere you are banging your knees! 😡

So #Old

20 Jun

My students have been taking graduate pictures. 📷 🎓 They keep talking about how ‘old they are’ now – they’re like 19-24. 😱 Horrible I know. . .  I’m 27! They’re aging me folks! If they’re ‘old’ – I’m one step out of the grave 👻

#TMI – So Much Fun! 0_0

20 Jun

Had my annual #physical for the #Chinese residence permit & #Visa! 😷

Managed it alone without a #translator – quite a feat! Look at my bold self go 😜

For #China 🇨🇳 you need: Blood Analysis, Urinary Analysis, X-Rays, Ultrasound, ECG/EKG, and Blood Pressure.

 The X-Rays 📷 are competely #Topless with other people (men included) waiting in the room 😱 for their turn – no protection. 😓 The ECG requires baring it all in front of a major, street level window with no curtain and a ferris wheel🎡 right outside❗ Goodbye dignity, hello #crosscultural oversharing! 😂
 

#Teacher Humor ~ Why my darlings, Why?!?

19 Jun

Student 👦attends a sum total of 9/22 classes 💻for the semester — not including the last class where we discussed the exam📚. Sends me an urgent email📧, “But Teacher, we have many questions before the test.” . . . . . .

Me 👩 💢 (in my mind. . .) “I don’t think you need to worry about that”.🙄
My actual answer 👩 (😣)”. . . . . I distinctly remember 🤔telling you not to miss any more classes📓 this semester — you missed 🏝three in a row. We discussed the test last class, but you skipped it💤😴.”
Student 👦: “Oh yes teacher. I know!”

Me. . . . SMH🙃😑

Blog Official ~ I’m #Moving!

19 Jun

Ladies and Gentlemen, it’s time ⌚to make the official blog 🖋announcement📣 – I’m moving again!  I’ll be staying here in China🗺, but after 3 years in central Henan I’m going North. Way north. As in Arctic Circle ❄ level north!  

We will be moving to a city called Changchun in the province of Jilin.  For those of you living in China, it’s up by Harbin – land of the ice sculptures. For those of you who have no idea what those words even mean – it’s up in the arm of China that is surrounded by Mongolia (great! Horses 🐴!), Siberia (Brrrrrr💂), and North Korea (0_0)❌❗.  

china-provinces-map

See the blue circle in the map up there? That’s Changchun.  I’m moving clear up to the land of Winter Olympics⛷🏂⛸, Forests with wild Bears 🐻 and Tigers, and Deer Antler soup. 😵 Craziness I tell you!

No, actually it looks like it will be really nice.  😀 The university 🏫 is called NorthEast Normal (NENU) and I will be working with the joint program with Rutgers University 🏫.   I will be teaching Economics 💹 and International Business 📈 this semester.  Economics and maybe some other classes next semester. The hours are a bit more than at my current university, but the pay is better, the students are of a higher academic quality (1st tier univ. instead of 4th tier univ.), I get most of the same benefits🚪, and it’s a new adventure 📷 awaiting me!

I was delighted to find out that one of my students and good friends 👭(Simon and his girlfriend Alice) live about 15 minutes away from my school. They are moving home and already invited me to BBQ.  Such a relief to have someone in the area!  I have two students👩👩 from Mongolia that I am hoping to get a chance to visit, and the train goes from Changchun directly to Moscow💂!  🚉 Course it takes a week one way, but still – I think I can get up to see Russia.  Not taking time to see North Korea ❌ – I’m sure it’s lovely, but not my cup of tea. Still, that’s a lot of new open doors 🚪 waiting to be checked out!  😀

I’ll keep you up to date on the details as I go.  My schedule 🕔 this week is insane.  Tomorrow I leave at 7:30 for the city (one hour) to get a Physical 😷done (surprise! wasn’t expecting this – just found out this afternoon). Then on from there a 3 hour trip to Beijing 🚝 (+ 1.5 hour subway ride to my stop) for some government paperwork on Wednesday.  Then back to school 🏫so I can give Final Exams on Thursday. Friday, back to the city to pick up my physical 🏥results. Back to school 🏫to grade and get signatures.  Then on Saturday, entering grades into the computer. Sunday off to Changchun ✈to get all my paperwork complete. Monday back to school 🏫to pack and get ready.  It’s a wild ride, but I am so excited to welcome the new year! 

#Strawberry ‘Betterfiles’

18 Jun

The name was ‘Betterfiles’ but I think it was supposed to be ‘Betterflies’ 😜

Tastes #Divine!  Small restaurant in the new CityOn Mall in #Zhengzhou called “Strawberry Forever”  —  all the deserts are strawberry! 🍓 

Zhengzhou is really growing recently – the #Mall is HUGE and has #Forever21 #Zara #sephora and more.  So nice and lovely! 

#Chinese Language Fun

17 Jun

This is why #Chinese is so confusing for the #waijiao (foreigners) – the same character can mean cloudy, moon, feminine, a last name, or genitalia 😂

Gateway to your #Heritage

16 Jun

I ❤ #China!  Driving down the street, ran across this gorgeous old #gate.  So beautiful!

Country Life

15 Jun

This sight will always remind me of my life here in #China.  One of the #values important to the Chinese is making sure everyone has access to a #job so they can survive.  So instead of using big machines to sweep the highways and streets, they pay the older people a small amount to do the job.  It’s not ideal, but it’s enough to live on.  They are very proud of the parts they clean. And the street sweepers are able to use empty plots of land by the roads to grow Food and Vegetables.  

So every day in my small village (Ok, 600,000 people- but That’s a Farming village here. . . .) you see the elderly driving by on these  tuk-tuks with brooms they made by hand.  Really sweet picture in my memory bank!

Life Abroad ~ #VPN Apk

13 Jun

I’ve found in my experience that most VPNs are a pain in the neck to download in certain places.  If the websites are blocked, down, not responding (ehhm Astrill ehhm not naming names), it’s frustrating trying to figure out how to download it. Or WORSE! The new updated version crashes and you need to go backwards to an old edition but the website dropped it.  

ANNOYING!

So I’m providing links to the APKs here for the three I am familiar with Astrill, Ivacy, and Vypr.  Please note that I am NOT a computer wizard — I just let you know what worked for me.  So I cannot vouch for the security of any of these websites. I used them all on my phone to download the APKs and nothing died or crashed. That’s the best I can give you for advice on how secure these links are. 🙂   All of these websites are accessible in most locations where the VPN sites are blocked – for now

  • Astrill 1 | Astrill 2

  • Vypr 1 | Vypr 2

    • Still has that issue where you need access to the website to install the file.  For example, in China you need a vpn on in order to install Vypr. You can borrow a friends VPN wifi, but just know this is a problem. 
  • Ivacy 1 | Ivacy

    • Very nice in that I have NEVER had problems with their website, VPN on or not. 🙂  So you could try going to their website
    • Minor problem for phone downloads – If you choose “download for android” it sends you to Google Play (which may or may not be available in your region).

For those of you who are unfamiliar with APKs, here is a short explanation 🙂 

Normally when you start using a software program (like Microsoft Office, VPNs, Facebook apps), you follow a process. 

  1. You go to the APP store or the Staples store and buy the software.
  2. You click the file and say “download.” That puts the file (software) on your device (computer, phone, etc). 
  3. Once you have the file on your device, you “install it” (make it run).  You click yes to a lot of buttons, agree to follow terms and conditions, and watch it load.
  4. After installing, it asks “do you want to open this software” and off you go using your new tool. 

But what happens when the app isn’t on the app store. Or it isn’t available in Staples. Or the website is broken?  How do you get that file downloaded to your device? 

This is where APKs come in — APK are just the download “file” you need for step 2.  Only instead of getting it from an APP store or the website, you went to a 3rd party online and downloaded it.  

So here’s the new process. . . 

  1. Go to the APK website above or your own link
  2. Download the file they offer.
  3. Do steps 3 and 4 as usual!
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