August 2, 2010


The trickiest part of writing every day, is writing every day!

I’ve been rather amiss at writing every day these days. Not only are my thoughts a bit scattered right now, but there is a lot happening all at once. Not that any of this is an excuse, but they are reasons.

I’ve been greatly involved with the students at Giraffe as they prepare for their big day, August 15, in Taipei. I finish up my regular part of my work day, and then head on over to Nanmen to help the students. We’re now getting to the point where practice is ending around 11pm! Makes for a long day. By the time I find a place that’s still open to get something to eat, go home, feed the babies, then eat, it’s getting around to 12:30 or 1:00am. Fall asleep, and before I even realize it, it’s time to get up and get started for my next day!

For anyone here in Tainan reading this, don’t take this comment the wrong way. I’m definitely not complaining. I’ve been helping with these story-telling contests at Giraffe for the past three years. I know the drill. I wouldn’t have volunteered my time if it were a problem.

I guess for me, it’s interesting to watch these students growing into their stories. By having me talk to them, I also notice that their English conversation skills are getting better. Where at the beginning of this process, they would always need my comments translated, they now listen and respond to me better.

It’s also interesting to watch just how much I and Janice can push them. May, for instance, has had her whole presentation changed. The story is pretty much the same, a few little tweaks here and there, but the way she tells it, and the visual presentation, have changed. I have to keep perspective on this at times. She is only 10 or 11 years old. We are expecting her to completely change everything in the space of 4 weeks! A process that took her over 3 months to prepare for in the first place.

The one thing about the summer months here (Saturday and Sunday in particular), is that these days are pretty much free time for me. I expect that when September rolls around again, these days will quickly fill up again, as in past years. Students get back in the routine of regular school hours, the bushibans get back to their schedules, and suddenly someone wants an extra class on a Saturday or Sunday to supplement their English skills. This might be a bit tricky this year, especially at the beginning of September, because I will be in Canada for three weeks. Oh well, it will give the students a chance to decide whether or not they need the extra time.

I’ve also, since I tend to have a bit of free time on the weekends, getting too involved with the computer. These two new sites that I’ve recently been introduced to, PPS and PIRATE BAY, are starting to take up valuable time of mine. I know, I don’t have to watch these shows.

The thing that I am enjoying about them is, they are programs from North America that I haven’t seen in a while. Shows like American Idol and Survivor, are programs that are not aired here in Taiwan. While some people may think I’m crazy to watch them, I still enjoy them. PPS is especially good site. It shows the program in streaming format, and incredibly, there is not all the waiting or stopping/starting that other sites tend to do.

Well, not a whole lot to write today. Short blog, but then again, not every day can be a 1000-word day!

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