Saturday, April 13, 2013

China as told by a Ginger Part 1

Today has been an extraordinarily bad day.  I want to take this time I have to share with you my time in China.  I will start at the very beginning.  I'm warning you now this is going to be a long read.

I was only able to go to China because of what I thought at the time was a miracle scholarship I was awarded during the summer.  Prior to that I was accepted into the program, but I had no way to actually pay for my plane ticket and visa.  So I got the scholarship, bought my ticket, bought some luggage and went to China August 8, 2012.  I came a month before school started here and went to Changsha to spend the month with my girlfriend.  Things were not so bad in Changsha besides the fact that the room I was renting didn't have internet and I was forced to use my iPhone to do anything internet related.  I ate lots of interesting foods and had an alright time.  My girlfriend and I had a bit of a falling out when I first came to China.  We seemed to disagree a lot.  We were in her hometown so her opinion on things were quite high.  She generally seemed very disappointed in me since I complained about her city a lot, but eventually that all changed.  I would like to add that my birthday is August 11th so I came on the 8th so that I could spend my birthday with her.  At the time she was interning at a bank in Changsha so I was only able to see her during lunch time, because well her parents didn't know I existed so she couldn't come after work.  So I spent an entire month just waiting for lunch time to come so that we could spend time together.  Eventually the month came to an end and I had to leave Changsha to go to school, she also had to go back to her school which was not in Changsha.
If I would have stayed in America and took summer classes last summer instead of preparing for China I could have graduated last December, but instead I wanted to spend this time with my girlfriend to see if she was "the one".  Anyway school started in China, I was only there taking Chinese classes which started every morning at 8 am.  A few days after arriving I was told to go to the office because there was something urgent they wanted to ask me.  Turns out the urgent question was just them needing an English teacher.  They told me it paid 140RMB a hour and that it was 4 hours a week.  I accepted since I only saw it as extra money.  I have no true prior teaching experience.  I was a TA back in America for Database Systems, but that is a subject I know also I wasn't the teacher, I was only the helper.  Teaching wasn't as hard as I thought it would be, but in the end I grew tired of trying.  They gave me Class B, which are the students who did bad on their preliminary test and were put into the lower class, but the book for Class A and Class B are the same.  Soon I realized most of my students did not want to be there or have any interest in the topics covered at all.  Most of the time they didn't even know what I was saying anyway since their English was so poor.  I honestly was trying my best and trying different ways to teach them, but nothing worked out and I got tired of their bullshit.  None of them did the homework, they all complained about everything, and I was just annoyed by their lack of effort to even fake things at that point, so I gave up.  I came to class taught them and just bullshitted 2 hours until class was over.  At this time I started working at a place called NDI.  Things were going well at NDI for the most part.  I was making more money than I was teaching at my college because I was working more hours.  Then I was asked to teach at a different NDI on the other side of the city, as a favor to the woman that found the job for me I accepted.  I taught there for five hours on a Saturday because that's what I was told they needed me to do.   Two weeks goes by and its pay day!! Yippee!!!  NDI refuses to pay me for working those five hours.  The office would not sign the form relinquishing the payment to me because they said I worked more hours than their full-time employees.  I told the woman that made me work there and she told me to come to the HQ and argue and demand my money. So I did and finally got paid about 1 month AFTER I was supposed to get paid.  I want go into full details here but just know I can't work at NDI anymore.

There are a lot of things I have left out but I will live that for tomorrow.....right now, I really feel crushed and can't type anymore....(this feeling has nothing to do with whats in this article, i'll explain in next article

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