Thursday June 28th, 2007

It's hard to believe that July is just around the corner. Summer camp starts on Monday which will make for a busy summer. I was happy to see the schedule change today. It seems that Tuesday will still be a two hour work day for me ... I'm thrilled as I thought I was going to have to give up my morning.

I was at the kindy after class and met one of my new students ... gosh, he's small. I will be teaching K1 Phonics every Wednesday during our eight-week summer camp program in attempt to prepare the kids for Level 1 English.

I don't have any photos, nor do I have many words. I will leave you with the story I'll be teaching in about two weeks time. It's titled An Egg Is an Egg ... by Nicki Weiss:

An egg is an egg until it hatches.
And then it is a chick.

A branch is a branch until it breaks.
And then it is a stick.

Nothing stays the same.
Everything can change.

A seed is a seed until it is sown.
And then it is a flower.

A block is a block until there are many.
And then they become a tower.

Nothing stays the same.
Everything can change.

Water is water until it is brewed.
And then it becomes tea.

You are you until I come.
And then you become we.

Nothing stays the same.
Everything can change.

The yard is green until it snows.
And then it becomes white.

Day is day until sunset.
And then it is night.

Nothing stays the same.
Everything can change.

This baby was a baby until he grew.
And now he is a boy.

But you can always be a baby.
You will always be my baby.

Some things stay the same.
Some things will never change.

Wednesday June 20th, 2007

I've been toying around the idea of buying a scooter. I've been renting for three years now and if you add it all up ... I've already bought a brand new bike ... and then some.

A new bike means new responsibilities ... a rented bike allows me the convenience of not thinking about much. Just pay and drive. With my Vietnam trip coming up, it seems that renting will still work out cheaper in the end ... for this year, anyway. As for next ... will have to wait and see.

I was told today that Malaria has been a rising problem in Vietnam as of late. I avoid news at all times but perhaps I'm going to have to break down and look into it. I suppose upon applying for visas we will be informed of precautions.

Chinese class went well tonight although my teacher told me I need to have more confidence. I'm not sure it's that I lack confidence, it's more that I often feel like I'm in Chinese Tongue Twisters 101. It's hard to keep it serious sometimes. My poor teacher.

To one of my oldest and dearest friends ... it's his birthday today ... ending for me and starting for you. Cheers to you. I hope you have a most excellent day!

Monday June 18th, 2007

Day three of the holiday .. dark clouds are starting to roll over 水蓮 ... thunder is rumbling. So much for sitting at the pool this afternoon. I have been on my balcony indulging in the Vietnam guide book I purchased yesterday. I am getting more excited by the minute. I know it's too early to start the countdown, but it's never too early to start the research.

Tomorrow Taiwan will be celebrating 端午節 (duan1 wu1 jie2) ... the Dragon Boat Festival. Friday, I found myself being told stories of why this holiday is celebrated and making 粽子 (zong4 zi) ... rice dumplings. It turned out to be an interesting day. I don't think I'll be heading to the races tomorrow ... I'm hoping to do some more hiking.

Yesterday, I was able to get out in the mountains. Some new photos are posted in the album on the right titled Summer of 2007. It begins ...

Wednesday June 13th, 2007

Two days until the weekend ... nine hours left of work. The sun decided to make a brief appearance first thing ... dark clouds threatened drops of rain for most of the afternoon.

I'm going to pick up my new passport in the morning ... as a blonde. Yikes. I suppose after my haircut tomorrow most of the colour will be gone. It will be five more years on my passport before a change shows.

Levi is staring at me ... as she always does. This is her way of letting me know it's time for bed. She meows at me every few moments ... to remind me that she's sitting there staring, of course. So persistent, this little one.

And with that purrrrring meow ... I'm off ...

Monday June 11th, 2007

Tell me this doesn't make you cry with laughter?!?!

Early to bed ...

The craziness started on Thursday evening. Some friends just made the move to Kuwait ... it's going to be an amazing experience for them! A night of drinks was in order ... found myself arriving on the hill just as the sun was starting to show.

Our 永和 school had a graduation party on Friday evening and they were kind enough to invite the other schools to join them at Ziga Zaga. This is hardly a place one can say no to! It has great food, great drinks and great service being under the Hyatt hotel and all. The cover band is from Canada and I happen to kinda know the bass player ... another good reason to get down and say hello. I, once again, found myself heading up the hill at 5am.

It's been raining most of the week ... life has been rather wet. We decided to play rugby on Sunday, despite all the rain. A message was sent to our coach in the early am to state the game was on. When we called him at 4:30 to question his whereabouts, it seems he thought the message was a joke. As you'll see in the newly posted album, we are without uniforms as he was supposed to bring them to the game.

After three muddy games, we find ourselves remaining undefeated. A wine and cheese party followed at mine. It was supposed to be a small get together but it turned out being a bit bigger. There was lots of yummy goodness so the extra help was needed!

It will be an early night for me with most of the day off tomorrow. I'll need the down time. It's been hangover after hangover ... ha. I have 16.5 hours left of work for the week ... after that follows a four day weekend. The weather is showing sun and mid-30's ... it best be correct. A camping trip near the ocean is in order.

Check out the new album on the right. I will update this every so often with happenings over the next few months.

Sunday June 10th, 2007

Today, I saw a lady on an old push bike. She had three bags of groceries in the front basket. She had a bag hanging on the right hand bar which contained a medium sized plant. Her daughter of about 13 was getting on the back of her push bike, dog in arms ... of course. Ah, Taiwan. I am off to get muddy and wet in a game of rugby.

Tuesday June 5th, 2007

She picked a good day to curl up and sleep. The weather shows thundershowers until next Tuesday ... the laundry I did this morning as the sun was poking through is never going to dry.

Stretchy Stretcherton, a.k.a. Datsun, will be looking like this all week. And who can blame him, really?

I'd be by his side if there wasn't a need for shelter to stay out of all this nonsense.

Saturday June 2nd, 2007

Rules for cats to live by ... how so very true!

Always accompany guests to the bathroom. It is not necessary to do anything. Just sit and stare.

Do not allow any closed doors in any room. To get door open, stand on hind legs and hammer with forepaws. Once door is opened, it is not necessary to use it. After you have ordered an "outside" door opened, stand halfway in and out and think about several things. This is particularly important during very cold weather, rain, snow, or mosquito season.

If you have to throw up, get to a chair or bed quickly. If you cannot manage in time, get to an Oriental rug. If there is no Oriental rug, any quality carpeting is good. When throwing up on the carpet, make sure you back up so it's as long as a human bare foot.

As often as possible, dart quickly and as close as possible in front of the human, especially on stairs, when they have something in their arms, in the dark, and when they first get up in the morning. This will help their coordination skills.

If one of your humans is engaged in some activity and the other is idle, stay with the busy one. This is called "helping," otherwise known as "hampering."

1. When supervising cooking, sit just behind the left heel of the cook. You cannot be seen and thereby stand a better chance of being stepped on and then picked up and comforted. Remember to let out a painful Meow.

2. For book readers, get in close under the chin, between eyes and book, unless you can lie across the book itself.

3. For paperwork, lie on the work in the most appropriate manner so as to obscure as much of the work as possible or at least. Pretend to doze, but every so often reach out and slap the pencil or pen.

4. For people paying bills or working on income taxes or Christmas cards, keep in mind the aim: to hamper! First, sit on the paper being worked on. When dislodged, watch sadly from the side of the table. When activity proceeds nicely, roll around on the papers, scattering them to the best of your ability. After being removed for the second time, push pens, pencils, and erasers off the table, one at a time.

5. When a human is holding the newspaper in front of him/her, be sure to jump on the back of the paper or use your paw to paw it down from behind. Humans love to watch you jump on their stuff.

6. When human is working at computer, jump up on desk, walk across keyboard, bat at mouse pointer on screen and then lay in lap across arms, hampering typing in progress.