Sorry it's been a few days. We have to use the computer in someone else's room and I don't always feel like bothering them. We have settled in a bit into the daily grind. We teach English at one church from 9:30-11:15 or so, then we have lunch and then we have a break. Some days we come back to the hotel and rest, some days we do some sightseeing. We have been to the silk market (a really crazy place with vendors who sell everything and will even grab you to get you to look at their things--I tend to be a prime target being white and all) and yesterday we went on a Ho Tong tour. Ho Tong means narrow street and it has also come to mean the neighborhoods that families find themselves living in. They are centered around a quadrangle. There are four buildings on each side where various members of the families live. There is a small courtyard in the middle and these Ho tongs are stacked very close to each other, some of the streets separating them are only 22 cm across. It has been amazing. Then we are on our own for dinner, sometimes I even get western food. Then we teach English at another church from 7:00-8:30.
The mornings have been small, my partner and I only have 2 or 3 students, only about 10-15 altogether. In the evenings, we have very large numbers. Our class has 15-20 students and about 150 come altogether. My partner and I have the class that speaks no English so we are trying to teach them basic things that they might encounter as people come for the Olympics in a few weeks. I am so very thankful that my partner speaks fluent Chinese.
I have learned a lot about the people here. They are so welcoming and so eager to learn. I just hope they wind up with as good an image of Americans from me and I have of the Chinese people from them.