China Calling and Writers Group Wrangling

What with working about two hours a day if that, I’ve been able to spend time enjoying the city of Chania. While I don’t like breakfast, I do very much enjoy brunch. Particularly if it’s not a workday. What surprised me about Chania is that there are a lot of places to go and have brunch. So I tried a few of them. It was on one of these walks to get brunch, and also to walk my sister’s dog, that I received a very perplexing phone call. Or rather it was a voicemail. When I went to listen to it as I was sitting down, the voicemail was in Chinese. But, it was from a Dutch number. I called the number back and then sent a text. There was no response either way. Needless to say I was very curious about the message, but I realized that it didn’t sound very happy. In fact, the person was emphatic. I started to suspect that it was the parent who had given me a bad review. I texted my student ShinWei and asked if I could play him the message in our lesson on Monday and he agreed.

I tried to have him listen to the message while I was giving him a mobile lesson on my phone. We had agreed that I would give him a tour of Chania in the last lesson of his package, but we could not because it was pouring most of last week. He did end up renewing for another ten lessons so I was able to do the tour in yesterday’s lesson. During the zoom call that was his lesson, I did try to play him the message but was largely unsuccessful. I guess we’ll just talk to remain a mystery. But it will eat at me for a while.

On Friday last week Marike at the English Center texted me to ask if I wanted to take on a student. Which of course I said I could do. So that’s one more on the books. As of this writing we had not scheduled any classes as yet. Jochem is not on the schedule this week as he is away in Portugal. I am looking forward to seeing him next week and hearing all about his trip. I have noticed in the last two years teaching for the English Center, that Dutch people do not know how to talk about their trip with any but the bare minimum of answers when you ask them how the trip was and what they did. The usual answer is it was fine. They are not overly effusive about their travel. Trying to get them to use adjectives? Forget it. It can be quite frustrating trying to get people to talk to you. The contrast is stark between people from northern Europe and people from other places. ShinWei for instance, loves to talk about where he’s been and what he’s done.

One of the things that I have not been very good about is my blog post writing exercise for the English Center. My excuse is that I’ve been sick for about a week. Jasper left me with some sort of a cold that he could have picked up some where. But I hope to do a bit of work on that today. I do feel very guilty but I think that Brenda will understand that it isn’t actually intentional. Also she will probably understand doing writing with toddlers in the house is also quite difficult. I will explain all of this and we will see what happens. She has given me a blog post to finish and since I’m pretty good emulating people styles it’ll be much easier than starting from scratch. I’m still a little concerned because I did not find it easy the last time I tried it so I have a little bit of insecurity when it comes to writing a blog post for someone else.

The Writers Group did not meet last week as Vondelkerk was not available. Instead of stressing everybody out or figuring out if people wanted to do an online meeting, we simply canceled. We will have to see what happens this week. I think it will be much easier once I’m back in Amsterdam. I can offer my house on the regular and be ready to host each week. Jasper might not be happy about that, but since he’s not home on Thursdays anyway, he doesn’t get a say.

That’s all she wrote for this Inkreadable installment. But stay tuned. As always, there is more to come.

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