For some unknown reason I am suddenly incapable of viewing wordpress.com from my computer. This could be the act of terrorists, or it could just be a problem with my internet. Whatever the case may be I’m working on a solution…sort of. I’m actually hoping it fixes itself.
IN OTHER NEWS!
I was robbed by a monkey and a baby last week. Actually “robbed” may be a bit extreme, but it pretty much sums up my feelings following the incident. My friend Matthew and I decided to visit this new bar/club that we had heard so much about. We made our way over there around 11 o’clock, which puts our arrival at time in the ballpark of 11:30. I’m not sure why I had to mention that…or am I? Either way, we got out of the cab and immediately were surrounded by people asking for money. Four of the individuals immediately caught my attention. The first two were women holding small children, probably around the age of 3 or 4. I honestly hate seeing kids in this situation, and in the past I have bought food or drinks for them rather then just handing over money. I mean that way I can make sure its benefiting the kid and not solely the mother (in case shes a lunatic). Now that may have been the course of action I took in this case, if it wasn’t for the other two individuals who caught my attention, the men with monkeys on leashes. Yes these men had pet monkeys, and frankly these monkeys were cool. I don’t know what kind of monkey’s they were, but they were small and they climbed on me. Usually these are the types of guys I would give some spare change but fate had other plans. I knew I had a few singles in my pocket and I reached down to grab them. However, I ended up pulling a few other bills (a 5 and a 10) out, and before I knew it the monkey man had the 5. I don’t know if he took it, or if I handed it to him in the visual-stimuli-overload induced confusion, but all I knew is within seconds he had it and I didn’t. In shock I turned my attention to the baby, who looked a little sad. I mean how can I justify giving the monkey money and not the baby. So I smiled and handed the baby the ten. I did my best to tell the mother to use the money for the baby, but I highly doubt she understood (my Mandarin is terrible). After that I scraped the monkey (who was at this time climbing on my head) off of me and headed inside, feeling pretty good that in some way I had helped out.
Drinks in Shanghai are pretty expensive, but often the cover is free, so my Matthew and I developed a little system. There is always a convenience store located somewhere in the vicinity of the target location, so we usually leave and buy a few beers from there, drink them on the sidewalk, and then head back inside. We did this within ten minutes of arriving at the bar. But immediately after leaving the bar we were approached by the same ensemble of baby mamas. It was a little ridiculous, especially since they had to cross the street and leave the crowded sidewalk in front of the club just to ask us for money. This time it was the baby who started climbing on me while the mother attempted to get money from the both of us. I was a little bothered by this, especially since the mother seemed to be encouraging the kid to use me as a jungle gym. 10 RMB can get you pretty far, it can definitely get your kid some food. I felt bad for the kid and I think we may have given them a couple more yuan, but it was still a very strange situation. As I stood up I saw the monkey and his owner crossing the street towards us. NO MONKEY! I said to him.
Its weird I feel bad about being so confused over such a situation. I mean I’m a big advocate for giving money to the less fortunate, but the way the mothers used their kids to get money just made me really mad. But who knows I mean maybe they wouldn’t get as much money otherwise, and in that sense they’re actually helping the kid more. Its very odd.
IN OTHER OTHER NEWS.
Classes are all going well. My kids are still awesome. I played a few new games with them that they all seem to like. Probably because they involve throwing a stuffed ball at the blackboard and, in most cases, at my head. But hey I’ll take a few hits in the name of education!
I have been frequenting East China Normal University, a local college a mile from my apartment, on my runs the past few weeks. The campus has a track which is great because it gives my legs a break from the roads. They also have a grass field, however after running on it for a week I returned on Wednesday to find it had been roped off. The mans always trying to keep a brotha down.
Thats all for now!