Snake Day!

By Chris S., CE Adviser in China

Today has already been pretty eventful, and it’s not even 9AM! I caught the bus this morning from Yangshou at 6:45 to Guilin. On the way we stopped for gas, I think. My next assumption is that something was wrong with the bus. We got a few miles down the road and pulled off again at another gas station. Isabella quickly told me that we would have to switch buses. This was an issue because one of the buses that I would have taken was canceled, so I had to make the 8:30 bus. The two stops definitely put us behind. Eventually Isabella chalked it up as a loss and told me that I would be spending the night in Guilin. I thought this would be a good chance for me to catch up on some email and organize my Flickr account. A few minutes after the news she told me that there was another bus at 10:30. This also seemed fine with me. When we got to the bus terminal in Guilin, she took off running and told me to meet her at the gate to the buses. Long story short, I made the 8:30 bus. Isabella is so sweet. She reminds me of a Chinese version of my Mom. She’s also a bit younger. After getting me situated on the bus, she ran into a small shop and grabbed me a Coke, Red Bull, mysterious boxed drink that I think is milk, Oreos, and an apple.

It’s already taken about 45 minutes just to get out of the city. A little bit ago, the woman across the isle from me started throwing up into a bag. Her husband was holding her hair. It’s so cute and disgusting at the same time. They then moved to the seat behind me and I think she is still throwing up. I’m feeling fine, but if I get a whiff of it I might take a turn to sickville. Reminds me of France when Rachel Roy threw up in a bag in the seat in front of me and I almost puked from the smell… Enough about that. I’m just glad to be on the bus.

Two hours later on the bus… Not glad to be on the bus, eight screaming Chinese people. I have no idea what is going on, but they appear to be arguing about the price. This is a funny culture. Now there is a random guy that came on the bus and is yelling. Now we’re back on the road. This bus lady is mad!

I am now at the orphanage and it is very interesting. There 88 kids that live here and they range from toddlers to 16 years olds. Essentially, it is not an orphanage, but more of a year round subsidized boarding school. Local families that can’t afford to raise their children have them live here 10 months out of the year. An American Christian NPO subsidizes it. It seems to work out for the children.

I might also add that I am the only person here that can speak English fully. There are three other people that know some, but every conversation involves a little explaining and gesturing.

Being in China is really making me realize just how good Americans, and westerners in general have it. Some of the things that I complain about at home are just petty selfish banterings. I hope once I become reacclimated to the states I can think back to how I feel now. It’s so easy to get caught up in the world around you. It’s now past midnight and I need to get some sleep so I can keep up with these kids tomorrow.

Oh and I’m really craving Rudy’s BBQ right now!

Chris- Adviser Abroad China

Cultural Embrace @ www.culturalembrace.com

www.flickr.com/photos/cschave

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