Day 137: Beautiful Sunny Day 2/28/2016

Wally

Surprisingly didn’t really feel the effects of the late night at work today. I had a graduation ceremony today with a bunch of kids I’ve only taught once… Yeah that makes sense let’s put on this little show for the parents complete with caps and gowns with a teacher that doesn’t even know their children’s names. Whatever… I’m ready to get out of here.

Someone at work had a business card slid under her door. It was all in Chinese, but it was fairly obvious what it was advertising. It was for prostitutes and I had a local teacher translate what it said. “fast, clean and descrete. Your choice of costumes from school girl, nurse to celebrities. 24 hr for your convenience.” Sooooo yeah… China.

Sydney

Wally left and I tried to go back to sleep but I needed to get my chores done. The internet was still not working so I had to go into work. The walk in was nice and I got a coffee on the way. The weather was beautiful it was 70 and the sun was so warm and inviting. I really felt like I was back home. I ended up going in early since the internet was down and I wanted to get some stuff done. I chatted with some people about last night. They said Wally and are the cutest couple and that I am a really good dancer. It was a nice compliment. I was talked to Aden (the birthday boy from last night) and said Wally and I were going to go to Steve Aoki , he said Steve Aoki is one of his favs and he wants to go to. He talked to his promoter and he can get 80RMB off all the tickets. SWEET!!!! So it looks like we are going to Steve Aoki on March 25th. The rest of the day was chill and Wally came and met me to walk me home. It got so windy, cloudy and cloud by the time we headed home. The temp dropped about 40 degrees. We have been writing our blogs on word docs until the internet starts working. It is really frustrating. Hopefully it starts working soon and I can go back to working from home. Good night!!

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Day 136: M2 2/27/2016

Wally

Sydney was sweet enough to walk me to work even though that meant that she would be super early at hers. The school day was really chill because both of my classes had tests so all I had to do was do a bit of a review at let them have at it.

I met up with Sydney after work and we walked back together. It’s one of her coworker’s birthdays and we were invited to meet them at a club. We ordered some pizza, got ready and ate. We met up with Jennifer, a friend from Syd’s work, and her husband. I had heard so much about them that it was nice to finally be able to put a face to the name. They party pretty damn hard and when I look at them I wonder if that’ll be us in the future. I mean we got to slow down at some point right? But these two are still going strong. We went to Zapatas, it’s a fun Mexican themed bar where a lot of westerners go to. It was fun seeing the white men on the prowl for Asian women.  Also the way the Chinese promote their clubs and bars out here is with free drinks and free flowing alcohol and it works. On the top of every hour Zapatas gives you a free tequila shot. Prior to the start of it the dance floor was dead, but after the first shots were poured the place was popping. We eventually made our way to M2 and partied with Syd’s coworkers. The music was on point and we enjoyed ourselves. We saw that Steve Aoki is going to be there late March and we’re making it a point to see him.

We got home late and I got an early class tomorrow, but whatever YOLO!

Sydney

Saturday so it means I have to go into the office.  It was a little cold when I walked but I warmed up as I went. The day itself was pretty busy and Jennifer brought in these delicious snacks. Not really sure how to describe them, some were kind of like Ritz Chips, others were vanilla flavored pretzels and mango. Anyways, they were tasty. My day went by and thanks to Wally I was able to bring my tablet to work and have all my shows and movies since Netflix decided to not work anymore.  After work I walked back home and as I was walking I heard someone getting way to close to me so I turned around with the intention of yelling but it was Wally. He saw me and was trying to catch up. It was a nice surprise and fun to walk the rest of the way home together. We got home and ordered some food for dinner. I am starting to get sick which sucks. My throat is so sore and I am achy but we are still going out tonight. After dinner we got all cleaned up and headed out. I ended up with food poisoning which sucks and I started to feel sick so we came home until I started to feel better and all the food was out of me then we left again. I am still determined to go out. We got a cab and headed to Zapatas to meet my coworker Jen and her husband. Zapatas was awesome!!! Every hour they pour shots of tequila for free in your mouth and you can dance on the bar. The music was fun and even though the drinks were pricey it was still a blast. The 4 of us were there about an hour and next stop was M2 for Aden’s birthday (another coworker). He is really cool and he had a table and bottle service at M2. When we got there we found out that Steve Aoki is going to be there at the end of March so we are debating if we want to go or not. The tickets are cheaper then Tiesto but still a little pricey and it would be right after our vacation. If we can get a bigger group we will probably go.  M2 was so much fun and such a great club! We got to dance and so many of the people that sit around were surprised that I can get all dressed up and actually wear make-up sometimes. I usually just wear a plain t-shirt, pants and a jacket and no makeup at work. It was a joke the whole night that I was nighttime Syd. Wally and I got a lot of compliments on how cute of a couple we were. One coworker, Jordan, has a Chinese girlfriend and when I introduced my husband Wally, she was shocked and said good job, oh wow that’s amazing, so cute. It was pretty funny. The dj was amazing and Wally and I danced so hard. We stayed until about 1am but Wally had to be up early to teach so we headed home. Showered and headed to bed. I was sad I was not able to stay later and go to the after party but have to be a good wife and come home with the hubby.

Day 135: Booked Dubai 2/26/2016

 

Wally

Today was alright… I only had two classes, but they’re really testing my patience. My first class has roughly 12-13 year olds and I’d say maybe only 2 of them have any English that’s worth bragging about. So that being said when it comes time to work on the assignment I let them do their thing. I walk by these 2 guys and they literally have nothing on their paper. I ask if they understand the assignment and they do. So that’s already bothering me.

Then one of them asks where are you from?

I’m American

What?!?! But you look Chinese?!?!

You know Chinese people are capable of giving birth outside of this country right? Like there’s nothing biologically holding them back from being able to do that.

I understand that within their little bubble 99.99999999% of the time if they run into someone that looks Chinese then they’re from China, but good god they have to realize that the world is much bigger…

As for my second class they’re a bunch of 5-6 year olds. The class starts at 6:45 and ends at 9. Not only are they coming straight from their ordinary school days, but some of them are coming without having dinner yet AAAAAND by the time we’re out of class many of them have gone past their normal bed time or just hitting it. This class is fucking hell. I hate every one of those walking meat bags….

I then go back into the office one of the PAs asked me why I looked so tired to ensure that she understood my frustration I made sure to talk in Chinese. I explain everything and she just chuckles and says your accent is cute. UGHGUGHGHAEKLCVNAW;OEUGHASERUIO;GKJ

So something I’ve come to realize while living here. I am indeed an American. I do not belong with these people nor should I be categorized with them. If anything I’m an American with Chinese tendencies. Also, being here has given me a weird identity. My nationality is American, my ethnicity is Chinese, but if you were to ask me where I lean culturally with my Asian heritage I’d say Taiwanese. Many of the food I grew up with and love many of the main land Chinese people have never heard of. People here are constantly commenting on my Taiwanese accent. I do not belong to the Chinese other than my ethnicity. Man it took me living in China to realize what my identity is…. And it’s fucked. I can only image what our children are going to go through.

The only saving grace about today is that we’re keeping up with booking our journey back home and we’re going to the UAE after Vietnam. Or as Clint would say ABU DUBAI!!!

Sydney

Woke up to finish some more booking and guess what….internet is still out. That means I also have to go into work. I am so mad. Well, Wally walked me to work and it was a nice treat. My classes were alright today and I did have a student named Ping Pong so that made the day better. Also, we booked our stay in Dubai which is really exciting (finally the internet worked when we got home).  We will be staying in the Atlantis in Dubai, June 18th – June 20th. Next stop, Abu Dhabi.

Unfortunately when I was at work and I tried to watch Netflix and it blocked me and said that because I am using a VPN I am kicked off Netflix!! SO PISSED!!! What I am supposed to do for my 5 hour breaks. Whatever, Wally is adding shows to my tablet and hopefully the new Astrill update will let me watch my Netflix.

Wally met me again and walked home with me. It was an easy walk we just got home so late. It is so much better when I work from home and am done at 9:50 instead of getting home around 10:30. I skyped with my mom a little bit and am def getting excited for her trip out here. Off to bed since we are up bright and early on Saturdays.

Also, I want to say that no matter what we spend I am proud of us and this crazy adventure we are doing already in China and the travels back home.  It will be so much fun and as we go along and book the cities it is making me more and more excited to see the world and experience countries that I have never been to. This is going to be a fun summer.

Side note – I am so excited for street food next Tuesday with Wally. Also, all 3 of my leggings have holes in them and there is no way to get around it. I am sad I just lost another 3 pairs of pants. On the plus side less clothes I have to take home.

Day 134: Internet sucks/ New School 2/25/2016

Wally

Well we started today off with good intentions. We wanted to catch up on our blogs and book more stuff for our journey back home, but our VPN was acting up and it prohibited us from doing anything productive. Moreover, this also meant that Syd had to go into the office instead of working from home…

Anyways… Today is the first day at the new school. It was fairly exciting to get the new desk space and a change of scenery. Work itself was bleh, although I am enjoying the new smart boards we have they’re much more intuitive and have way more capabilities than the old ones. If public schools back in the states can somehow afford to get these out to the classrooms man…. I’m salivating just thinking about what I’d be able to do in class.

I met with Syd after work and we walked home together. That’s one thing about this journey out in China. It’s our first year of marriage and we’re being tested left and right. I’ve come to a realization that with marriage, and I suppose any relationship, there are ebs and flows, ups and downs, but the beauty of marriage is that no matter what you ride it out together. China has definitely tested us and I feel like we’re coming out on top. One thing I’ll miss about China are our walks, but I also know that’ll be something we’ll continue back home.

Sydney

Wally and I got up this morning and tried to do some trip stuff but our internet was not working with us. My work website was not working either and I had to go into the office. Wally and I did what we could then I packed up and headed out for my walk to work. Work was pretty slow and I had a lot of no shows. I was supposed to do a training and one of the videos they wanted us to watch was on Youtube…well its China and youtube does not work without a VPN and work does not have a VPN. Luckily another team lead just helped me and I finished about half the training.

I am now watching Parks and Rec and that is what I did on my break. Usually I head home but since the internet was tricky this morning I just wanted to stay at work to be safe. Wally did not want me walking home that late at night by myself so he met me at work and we walked home together. It is a huge difference when I stay late at work as opposed to being home. By 10:20 when we get home there is still a lot to do, but when I work from home by 10:20 we have worked out, swept and finished all of our chores.

We were able to book a little more and officially have our flight from Vietnam to Dubai. We are flying Emirates Airlines. I am so excited to try a new airline and it is a direct flight which is pretty cool.

It was nice walking home with Wally and showing him all the little vendors that we will try soon. I also liked not having to walk home by myself. 🙂 Best hubby!!! ❤

P.S. We want to apologize for sometimes posting and emailing multiple posts at a time. When our internet does not work we cannot access wordpress and cannot do the blog.

Day 133: Happy Birthday Bianca! 2/24/2016

Wally

We slept IN today and didn’t get a start on the day till about 1. We went to the train station to pick up our tickets to Beijing and Nanjing. That wasn’t as big of an ordeal as I thought it was going to be. We showed up gave them our confirmation number and they printed out our tickets easy peasy. However, while at the station you can see those people that aren’t from Shanghai because we got a bit more stares than we normally do. I overheard some people giggling that you have an Asian with a foreigner. Whatever… Small minded people.

We then went to visit my friend Eddie, he had recently been back to the states and just picked us up some snacks we’ve been missing. We sat around and chatted with him for a bit. He’s got a pretty interesting life ahead of him. He and his girlfriend are currently trying to decide where they’ll end up in the future. He’s looking at eastern Europe right now which would be super cool.

When we left it was in the heart of rush hour…. I’ll let the video do the rest of the talking.

Sydney

First, I want to start by saying happy birthday to my lady love Bianca Rae!!!!! I hope you have an amazing 26th birthday. I know you are in tax season and it is not the best but you are beautiful and I know you will party when you can. XOXO I can’t wait to celebrate with you in China in a few months.

Wally and I finally woke up and got our stuff ready for the day. We are making the trip to Hongqiao Railway Station to see how far it is and where we need to go in that station when we do take our trips to Nanjing and from Beijing back. We thought we would need our passports but we were able to pick everything up no problem. The place was packed and it was a bit of a nightmare. This one lady in line was on our ass as we were trying to get all of our tickets. As we walked away I yelled and said “what are you looking at” in Chinese. A new favorite phrase of mine. Wally yelled at the woman first and she turned around to her friends and said look at the Asian helping the white person. Ugh, Chinese people are so rude sometimes.

We decided to walk around Cloud Nine Mall since we had time to kill before heading to Eddies. This mall is it’s on city block and has 8 stories in some sections and 12 in other sections. It is huge!!! There  is so much to do and see but we just meandered around and relaxed.

After we made our way to Eddie’s house, Wallys friend that lives here, he brought us some snacks from the states since he was just back for a month. It was nice to catch up and see him. he said we have both lost alot of weight which was a nice compliment. We came home and finished some chores before heading to bed. A nice relaxing Sunday.

Day 132: Tiesto!!! 2/23/2016

Wally 

So we’re seeing Tiesto today and because of that we had a bit of a lazy day. Syd wanted to try out the Chinese breakfast burrito so I went ahead and picked some up for us. It was funny cause the guy that makes the burritos noticed that I wasn’t a local and was just asking me questions like where I’m from and how I’m liking it here. I ran home and we chowed on our burritos. We napped and lounged around till 2 or 3 then I picked up those oh so delicious wads of meat wrapped in dough and drizzled with peanut sauce. We ate those up took a nap, got ready and headed out to the club.

Man…. If you’re a nonsmoker in Shanghai it’s difficult to party here. People are CHAIN SMOKING left and right in the clubs it was so intense that I had to bury my face into Syds hair and it acted as a “filter”. So, remember what I said about how locals don’t really party? Well I take that back. There are some that go waaaaaaay tooooooo haaaaaard. There were these two DRUNK ASS girls “dancing” by us. I put up the quotes cause they weren’t so much dancing, but swaying and bumping into people instead. At two separate occasions one of them straight up fell flat on her back and then flat on her face. It wasn’t until the second occasion that the bouncer removed her. Another thing that gets me is club attire in Shanghai. Sure you get the typical dress up types, but at the same time you get those that are completely dressed down. They’re wearing sweats and sneakers into the club, but because it had a brand on it, it somehow makes it acceptable.

The opening DJ wasn’t bad at all she started off a bit slow, but definitely picked it up as the crowd grew. Well like I mentioned before it was really difficult to breathe where we were standing and it got to Syd. We persevered through 3 hours of chain smokers and rude ass people, but she had to get some air or she would have passed out. So I stayed and got molested by another Asian guy….. Why does this keep happening to me…. Anyways Tiesto comes on and it’s just mayhem… Everyone surges forward with their phones drawn out trying to snap a picture of him. I took a few shots and decided it wasn’t worth it to be up in the front with the groupies. I literally had to shove my way through and found Syd just dancing her ass off. I guess she’s feeling better. We stayed for about another hour or so and called it a night.

Sydney

This morning was all about planning and trying to get the rest of our trips in order. We really needed to book Xi’an and Nanjing. Wally and I did some research on what we want to see and mapped out all of Nanjing, we bought the train tickets and talked to his yipo (since we will be staying with her overnight). We also Skyped Matt and talked about the Xi’an trip, we were able to book the hotel but we were having internet problems so we could not book the tour. We watched some tv and took a nap before Tiesto. Oh, also Wally got us some Chinese breakfast burritos that he had earlier in the week. When we woke up from the nap we went and got our dumplings. She is back!!! The delicious peanut sauce dumplings. OMG they were so good! I was so happy. I made myself a couple of pregame cocktails with the rest of the Grey Goose from New Year’s.

We took the metro and found the club pretty easily. Checked our coats and headed to the dance floor. We picked a spot since we did not want to have to move to much before he came on. The opening dj was really good and we were able to dance and have fun. About 30 minutes before Tiesto was to come on it got super packed and I was having a hard time breathing with all the chain smoking and i actually almost passed out a couple of times because I got so lightheaded. I went to the bathroom and just ran the cold water on my hands and arms and I started to feel better sitting under the air conditioning duct. I was able to get back to Wally and find my spot but I started to feel sick again so I had him wait to take pics so close then meet me on the side where we had more room to dance. Wally made his way over and we had a great rest of the night. We left around 2 and caught a cab home. We bought a bottle of water and you could taste the smoke in your mouth as you drank the water, it was absolutely disgusting. We showered and headed to bed. I had to wash my hair twice and there was still faint hints of smoke. All in all an amazing night and I am so glad we were able to see a big dj in Shanghai. It was a great Saturday night.

 

Day 131: Rainy Mondays 2/22/2016

Wally

Today was the last day at the old school. It was pretty pointless for us to show up. All of the computers were packed up and put away along with a majority of the materials. I “taught” my two classes and was glad to leave. I saw that the dumpling store was opening up and had hoped it would be open for tonight. Unfortunately, they were still closed so instead I got Syd her favorite chips. Tomorrow ought to be good we’re going to see Tiesto!!!

Sydney

Wally and I walked and saw that the dumpling lady will be back tomorrow, so excited!!! Wally and I worked out and did our chores since today is our Friday. My day was pretty boring and my classes went by pretty fast. This week went by so fast and I cannot believe it is already the weekend. Also, I got the confirmation email from my dad that he will be meeting us in Paris! I am excited for Wally and my dad to see Paris for the first time. It will be an epic trip. Oh, and I am going to try and go to Euro Disney :), we will see if I can make it work. Wally surprised me and brought me home my favorite cumin lamb flavored chips. It was a sweet surprise and a perfect way to end the night. It was pouring today and gloomy but it was still a fun weather day. Shanghai is cool in the fact that Wally and I have experienced some insane weather that we definitely would not get back home. I hurt my back and I am hoping it feels better by tomorrow since I will be dancing the night away. Goodnight!

Day 130: Packing Up 2/21/2016

Wally

Today was relatively normal in terms of classes, but we were packing up damn near everything in the office in preparation for our move to the new school. I got to say everyone is excited to get a new and updated facility. Many of our computers and smart boards were on their last leg. We were treated to Pizza Hut as a reward for us packing up the office. Now remember Pizza Hut here is FANCY. So that was nice.

I didn’t bring this up the other day because it’s a bit gossipy and might intrude on this person’s right to privacy, but the juxtaposition and perspective of it all is interesting, at least to me it is. We have a local teacher that studied in the UK let’s call her Beth. Beth’s English is by far better than most of the local teachers and she’s fairly westernized thanks to her time in the UK. While there she had a boyfriend and they inevitably broke up due to reasons I’m not all that aware of other than the fact that she’s now in Shanghai and he’s still in the UK. Either way she’s having a hard time with it and I happened to be there to listen. For a typical Chinese woman all they’re looking for is a man that can provide for them financially and that’s it. There is no need for companionship or intimacy. There is a woman at my center that has been married for 6 years and she’s contanstly talking/giving advice to the younger women on how to get the right man. She herself doesn’t seem to happy with the one she has and seems to be giving them advice as if to help these women avoid her mistakes. Either way Beth is very different in the sense that she’s very much looking for companionship and is only attracted to white men. I told her she’s lucky white dudes love asian women and the conversation went as followed.

Me: Yeah white dudes love them some asian women.

Beth: Oh really?!?! I didn’t know that. Why is that?

Me: Well in western culture anyways they view asian women as obedient, service oriented, motherly and exotic.

Beth: Really?!?!

Me: Yeah, but we both know that most asian women got stones shoved so far up their tight asses that they shit diamonds. Too much high matenence bullshit.

I do hope for the best for Beth. I talked to Syd and we might invite her out with us for dinner from time to time. She mentioned how she feels lonely and her being relatively new to the city I’m sure she’d like the company. She’s a sweet girl and I wish her well.

Sydney

I spoke with my dad this morning and we were ironing out details of his trip and it looks like we will be seeing him in Paris at the end of June. It is pretty awesome helping my dad plan a trip out to see us in another country. I will see my mom and ralphie in China, dad in France, and my aunt and uncle in England. We are a worldly family ;).

The walk to work was nice and I found some places that I would like to take Wally. The street vendors looked really good. Also, I passed a dumpling lady with the peanut sauce but she is not the one by our house so I am still waiting.

Work was pretty slow and boring. I did have a few students who wanted to just free chat and that is always nice. I walked home and it was so windy and cold. I am glad it did not start raining. Luckily I am working from home tomorrow when it is supposed to start raining.

Wally and I did our workout and it was fucking intense today, we were both working up a sweat. I taught my last few classes from home then headed to bed.

*No one at my work knows who Tiesto is. They asked what I was doing on my weekend and I said Wally and I are going to Tiesto and they were surprised we bought tickets. There is no guest list here, it is not like Vegas where you can get in for free even for big dj’s. You have to buy tickets. They thought he was some local Chinese dj and thought I was dumb for buying tickets.

 

Day 129: Walking Home 2/20/2016

Wally

I had to go into work early today and had to forgo breakfast at home. On my way to work I stopped to get what I suppose I’d call a Chinese breakfast burrito. It was a crepe like dough, as the dough cooked the cook cracked an egg and spread it out over the crepe. He then sprinkled green onions and garlic over it. Afterwards he folds it over and spreads the black hoisin sauce you’d get at pho restaurants and layers it with crunchy goodness. Sooooooo gooooooood!

IMG_20160220_092606.jpg

Work today was just that, work… I’ve been watching a lot of Anthony Bourdain’s “Parts Unknown” and it’s making me really excited about our travels across Asia/the world. I’ve definitely caught the traveling bug and I now truly understand and appreciate why people choose to explore the world.

PS I found the glove

Sydney

Today I am in the office all day so Wally and I got up and headed out. He left before me but I was not that far behind. My morning classes were pretty boring and nothing to exciting. We had a meeting and it was so pointless and boring. Jennifer and I pretty much just chatted since I had a 5 hour break. I discovered when I was walking around that I recognized one of the street names and decided that I would walk home today. I made more leis at work and watched Netflix. My last class was cancelled and I was able to come home early. I figured out how to walk home from work!! I am so happy and it was the same amount of time that it would take me to ride the metro and change lines and come home. I am so happy!!! About 35 minutes walking door to door. Unfortunately I lost a glove on my walk home. I am so sad :(. I was extremely proud of myself for figuring the walk home though, so that was a plus. Wally was not home when I got home so I did our chores and set up to work out. When Wally came home I told him that I had lost my glove and he said he thought he saw it and ran back outside and he found it!! I am not sad anymore. We chilled the rest of the night and headed to bed.

Still no dumpling lady….please dumpling lady come back!!!!!!!

Day 128: Vietnam is booked 2/19/2016

Wally

It was a pretty chill day. I only had my one class, but the new girl showed up today so that was cool. She’s from Orlando! Yay….

When I came home Syd and I booked Vietnam. It’s crazy to think that in just the first year of marriage we’ll do and see more than what most people will do in their life times. We’re in Shanghai, going to Xi’an, Nanjing, Hong Kong and Beijing. Then we’ll be going to Thailand, Cambodia, Vietnam and the UAE. We’re still trying to figure Europe out, but god damn!

Also as promised a quick tour of the new school

Sydney 

Wally and I did our workout and this video was intense, it is a ballet workout and my ass is killing me. We went to make breakfast and do the dishes and the water was turned off. Luckily a couple hours later it came back on. We booked our Vietnam trip completely and have our 5 days all done! June 14th – 18th. I am so excited. I can’t believe how this trip is coming together. Next up, U.A.E. Dubai and Abu Dhabi June 18th – June 22nd. I Skyped my Aunt Dianne for a few minutes and we will be seeing her and my Uncle in England on July 5th. I am excited to get back to England and end our trip in a place where they speak the same language as me.

My classes were actually interesting today. Almost all custom lessons and they were asking some crazy questions. I was really engaged in class today. All of my students spoke great English and it was really easy to teach today.

Still no dumpling lady….:'(

I had a student named Wang Chung. Yes, I sang the song in my head all night.