We returned from the States and launched into Mandarin
classes. Which is fun, but requires study time outside the 6 hours per week that we're in class. Also, the last two weeks I worked double hours to make up for the 2 weeks I was gone. I have slept and slept on the weekends.
When we moved overseas when I was a kid, the mission group we were with had established timelines: Live in a country for 3 years, then return for a 3 month furlough. That was the timeline we followed. I never thought about it until this trip to the US after just 10 months. I now understand the wisdom of that plan.
Do you know how easy life is in the States? You can go anywhere you want to, without checking in with people.
Such wide open spaces!
You can buy... SO much. I wanted to record one of our shopping trips to Walmart to share with my Chinese friends here, but decided that might be insensitive, or send a message of greed and materialism.
Seriously - popcorn!
And the heaven that is a bottomless cup of coffee...
My first thought, as we left the Vancouver airport and meandered that city, was, "Man, these Canadians are tall!" Of course, they're no taller on average than Americans. It was just the culture shock of not feeling like a giant!
We had to take the trip when we did. We had given ourselves one year to keep things in storage, with the goal that after a year we would know better what we still might need. So we had to clean out the storage unit, and really put a push out to sell my car. Due to school vacation times, our "one year" became 10 months, so that we could be back in time for school to start.
We cleared out the storage unit - with great success! And succeeded in selling my car. Yay! But on the whole I think the trip was premature. Now I'm back almost to the beginning of trying to consider Beijing home. Not that I want to go back to the States. It's easier, yes, but a LOT more expensive. I speak the language there, but I'm learning this one.
I don't really know what my problem is. I guess, on the whole, I'll never really be "happy" anywhere, so I just wish I lived in a location that I liked better, so the "unhappy" could be a little comfortable.
I'll be more positive when I write again. I promise. I just need to re-settle a bit.