Mark’s e-mail to George (Chinese Trains)

[Editor’s note: Mark has given me permission to post edited versions of our e-mails.  His experience is so rich that whenever he tries to tell a complete story it gets too long  for him to have time to get it down and still earn his living.  So here’s the latest, briefer, e-mail.]

Mark:

We’ve been having the worst early storms I can recall, and I’ve been here since 1978.

I know you were down last time you wrote.  Hope you’re doing better.  Maybe the best thing to do is just to keep contact for the time being.  I know that travel in a foreign culture can be depressing as all get out.  Glom onto the other ex patriots–knowing full well that you aren’t.  We look forward to your safe and healthy return.

G

George:

I’m great and thanks for your concern. I had to take an emergency trip to Shanghai over the weekend with a sick teacher friend.  It was a busy, busy weekend.

The school that I’m teaching at had a ‘Parent’s Day/Open Campus’ day last Friday and there were a ton of people here. We were asked by our CP (Centre Principal) to put on a ‘dog and pony’ show that day for the visitors. The day went exceptionally well for all of us. I had students, parents, and teachers from other schools in my classroom all at once. I had the students all create a game of chance (or borrow one from a casino) and describe, analyze, and summarize it. They all found that playing games of chance for money, in the long run, costs money. It was a whole bunch of ‘ah ha’ moments that I saw with my students. A great day it was!

A colleague that I teach with here gave me a call Saturday morning asking me if I would accompany him to Shanghai so that he could get help for an infection he has. Being here, and adventurous, I said sure. Two things happened Saturday; First: I discovered how the train system works, and second: I also discovered that I don’t EVER want to have medical needs while I’m here in China.

The train was WAY cool! Shanghai is about 100 miles away from where I am here in Wuxi, the train ‘floats’ on a track, and it took about 30 minutes at speeds of over 343 kph ( or over 200 mph). I also found a small indoor ski hill there. Not like the sierras, but at least I can get my skiing fix. So, that said, I will be taking a ski trip to Shanghai soon…. Sounds kind of funny, huh?

Mark Lilly

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2 Responses to Mark’s e-mail to George (Chinese Trains)

  1. Hank Raymond says:

    The worst early storms you can recall???? Hey, those were the best early storms I can recall. During the storm I called my brother who lives in Sun Valley, Idaho and made him envious by telling him about all the snow we were getting!
    -Hank

  2. George says:

    Well, it’s all a matter of perspective, I guess.

    George

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