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update

my first week of Chinese language lessons is over – and it is amazing how much we have learned after only 5 days of classes. Mind you, these were 5 full days of intense Chinese lessons starting at 9:00 AM and ending at 4:30 PM or so each day (and this does not include the several hours of homework we must complete each evening). Also, considering the class consists of only six students, each of us gets a good deal of one-to-one interaction with our professors throughout each day. We have two professors, one who teaches mornings and one afternoons, and in my opinion they are excellent teachers – both native Chinese speakers, very knowledgeable of the language, and perhaps most importantly, extremely patient with novices of the Chinese language. I have been extremely busy but also extremely happy – I have been enjoying learning and practicing Chinese and hope that great things will come of the time I put into it.

at the moment we are in Tennessee visiting Yvonne’s brother Robert. Okay so today we went to Dollywood, because Robert, who is a meteorologist for a local station, managed to score some free tickets. I was quite dreading going to Dollywood as images of dancing Dolly Parton lookalikes made me fear. But fortunately Dollywood is not, as I had thought beforehand, a large shrine to Dolly Parton – in fact it is an amusement park that she bought some years ago and has simply added to over the years. I only saw three or four images of Dolly Parton throughout the day and they weren’t too disconcerting. On the contrary, we rode two very good roller coasters (one wooden and new, another one steel that had three loops) as well as various other rides, and generally had a good time. Callum really enjoyed the carousel, though at first he didn’t know quite what to make of it. Also, being Canadian, being surrounded at all times by people native to the mountains of Tennessee was an experience to say the least. I think I even experienced mild culture shock. I felt more out of place at Dollywood than I did in most of Europe.

15. May, 2004

10 Comments

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  1. jeditigger
    15. May, 2004 at 5:22 pm #

    OK, for those of us who lost touch with you…

    What in heck is going on with your life? 🙂

    • admin
      15. May, 2004 at 7:52 pm #

      I’m doing an international MBA program at South Carolina – it is an MBA program coupled with Chinese language lessons and a year and a half spent in China taking classes and completing an Internship.

      hope all is well with you –

      • jeditigger
        16. May, 2004 at 6:23 am #

        It’s been quite a week, but things are tolerable.

        So you’re a Gamecock too now! WOO! Go us. 🙂 And…China. Wow. Wow.

  2. rin3y
    15. May, 2004 at 6:53 pm #

    Also, being Canadian, being surrounded at all times by people native to the mountains of Tennessee was an experience to say the least. I think I even experienced mild culture shock.

    [voice = “rednecky”]
    Spennin’ thu day at Dollywood? That thur’s what livin’ in Amurka’s all ’bout, son!

    Yeeeeeeeeeeeeee-ha!
    [/voice]

    –riney

  3. tarotchan
    15. May, 2004 at 8:24 pm #

    Both sounds fascinating. And about all I know about Dollywood other than yeah the dolly parton thing is the rescue work they do with Bald Eagles there

    • mcg
      16. May, 2004 at 11:44 am #

      your lj icon is very ummm… fitting to a post about cough … Dolly.

      • admin
        16. May, 2004 at 3:09 pm #

        I think those are crossed arms!

  4. donnie_baseball
    16. May, 2004 at 12:48 pm #

    Cool, did you get any DollyDollars?

    I just finished up my first year of my EMBA program. I can not believe it went so fast. It sounds like you are already enjoying yours and try to enjoy it even when the workload seems overbearing. Good luck and I’m sure you will be very happy you decided to do it.

    • donnie_baseball
      18. May, 2004 at 11:47 pm #

      On the topic of Dolly Parton. I read someplace today that her Imagination Library has handed out its 1,000,000th book. She started the organization in 1996 and it gives out books to children once a month from birth to age 5.

      • admin
        29. May, 2004 at 5:28 am #

        that is pretty cool!

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