So, just in case you’re confused by dates, after the weekend of 7/8 November, it was back into regular days “commuting” between Jhong Siao (school) and Cheng Da (university). I spent the week focusing on Cheng Da homework and attending Polan's (my mentor’s) classes.
The time had come when I would be introduced to the other English teachers – my initial training was complete. I was filmed during Polan's classes on Tuesday and then the film had its world premiere the next day at a meeting in school. No red carpet! The idea was that the teachers could assess how best to use my undoubted talents in their classes. The good news is that my talents are in demand – I have already been asked to assist some other teachers. Sam Mendes should hear about this – I’m guessing he’ll be looking for a new 007 one of these days. No offence, Daniel!
My next major engagement was a dinner sponsored by some of the school donors on Friday 13th. And who else would be attending? None other than the Wei family, of Winnie fame! Now, given that my colleagues tease me relentlessly about Winnie, I was less than thrilled about the prospect of her attending the dinner. (For the avoidance of doubt, I like Winnie very much as a friend.) Despite her presence, I attended and enjoyed the evening very much. There was nothing unlucky about the 13th.
The weekend got off to a slow start – I didn’t see Saturday morning – but it livened up when Kun Rong messaged me suggesting a 按摩 (massage). Figuring that it would a nice, relaxing experience, I said yes. Big mistake and definitely near the top of my "most-painful-ever experience" list! My masseur was either a man who had no concept of pain or a man of sadistic tendencies. He dug his thumbs deep into ALMOST every part of my body. I can’t be absolutely sure of this, but I'm highly suspicious that Kun Rong asked the man to cause me extra pain. I guess I’m going to have to ‘man-up’ if I want the 007 role.
Sunday was a fairly early start with Kun Rong picking me up at 8:00am for breakfast with Xie Long and En Rou. En Rou was heading to church and the boys were heading for their long anticipated baseball game. To add some interest to proceedings, the winner would be the person who hit the most balls and the loser would suffer a forfeit. Guess what? I lost! So, when the exchange students come to Taiwan, I must perform my forfeit. More on that later…
Post defeat, I was treated to lunch in Xie Long's house with his parents, sister and brother-in-law. We watched some baseball (Taiwan vs Puerto Rico), presumably because I had some learning to do. I freely admit that I know nothing about baseball, but I’m learning.
As usual, the weekend ended with some last minute homework. Does that happen to anyone else?