Saturday, February 27, 2010

Here I Am

It's 8 a.m. and I'm feeling refreshed after a good night's sleep. Air Canada lost one of my bags, the one with all my bras and my ankle boots. I can't remember what else is in that bag. But it was heavy.

I'm sitting in the hostel lobby with a cup of hot water, thinking I'd take half an hour to do my morning internet canoodling, but then I remembered I can't access most the places I like to canoodle - facebook (blocked), twitter (blocked), blogger (blocked). Back to blogging through email.

Today I'm going to buy a sim card and start looking for a home. 

I knew I would miss my family and it wasn't fun to say goodbye, but the first shock of homesickness really hit me somewhere over the Pacific midway through my flight. Cuz, ya know, ya can't turn back then: I really am seven hours away from starting over in a foreign country where I don't know anyone. This is by far the biggest thing I've done completely by myself: It's exciting, but it's also a little scary.

Then the old lady sitting next to me started chatting. We switched to Mandarin when she found out I could speak it. When I sneezed, she offered me her blanket so I could stay warmer. She told me to be careful in Shanghai (about a million times) and to only go out during the day, and to only go out with friends. She told me which cab company to take. She told me which areas of town are too expensive, she told me my Lonely Planet map was no good and I should buy a new one in the Subway. She asked me how much money I was making and whether or not I'd signed a contract yet.

I immediately felt better, because everything she was talking about was so familiar. I just love old Chinese ladies: Bundle up to stay healthy, how to get anything for cheaper, how to stay safe and all those money questions that seem intrusive to us Westerners - that's their game. And I know that. Talking to her made me remember I'm not walking into a completely new situation. There's lots I already know.

But plenty to learn too. I'll keep ya posted.

1 comment:

Mishi said...

Oh my goodness...they lost your BRAS?? I can't decide if I would be more upset about the bras or the boots. I hope they find it soon!