Friday, May 30, 2014

Drum-roll please...

I will be in America from July 16 until August 14! When I return from America, however, I will not be returning to Macau! (Start drum-roll...) I will be moving to a city just outside of Hong Kong! There, I will be a volunteer coordinator for the church (among other things), and I will also be studying Chinese at the university! I am very excited to start on this new journey, and I hope that you will all continue to follow it!  i cannot promise that I will continue my blog, but I will continue with my newsletters!  Please send me an e-mail or comment here if you would like to receive my monthly newsletters!

Friday, May 23, 2014

Updates

This past month has been fun.  I was able to take a vacation to Taiwan to relax, and it was excellent.  I visited some University classmates, one originally from there and one who lives and works there now.  It was a lot of fun to be able to meet up with both of the girls, and to catch up!

I went with my roommate, and we checked out the Concordia that is in ChiaYi.  It was such a neat school!  We loved the environment and the camaraderie that is evident between the staff there.

I've also had opportunities to go out with students/friends, and I got some exciting news just a couple days ago that a lady who has been coming to the English center for many many years has decided that she wants to be baptized!  I am so elated to have been able to hear her express that wish to me, and to see the joy in her eyes when she shared it. I am so happy to have another sister in Christ! I don't know when the baptism will be, but I hope that I will be here for it!

My dates for my time in America have been set.  I will leave Macau on July 16, and when I return in August, I will be moving to a nearby city to study Chinese and to work in a church for foreigners.  I might be discontinuing my blog, because of internet issues.  For those who want to keep updated, make sure you're on my e-mail list by sending me an e-mail by clicking here.


Friday, April 25, 2014

Easter Sunday

 Easter was a wonderful celebration here in Macau!  As you can see in the photos on the right, we had lots of things going on!  I was able to play the flute in the worship service, something that I hadn't done in years!  It was exciting to be able to do that.  The girl to my left is playing the keyboard.  It is quite refreshing to hear the keyboard instead of a recording when she's able to play!
 Later in the service, unpictured, was a flute duet with me and one of the missionary kids.  She agreed to play with me, and it was very special to have flute music!  She was able to get the flute for me to play, as I did not bring mine from America.
We also took part in a play, taking the part of the disciples who just found out that Jesus had risen!  It was fun to tell that story.  Though the front
row of seats are empty in that photo, note that we are Lutheran after all, and all of the people sat in the back rows ;)

The next photo shows the birthday girl!  She got to share a birthday with Jesus' resurrection! :)  She turned 5 this special day, and you can see the traditional cake the the people of Macau buy and eat for birthdays.
After the potluck on Easter, we dyed Easter eggs.  It was a lot of fun!

We had a very special holiday, and we are excited for the friendships that have come from events like this, but most of all we are thankful for the opportunity that we have to share the Word of God with the people that we have come in contact with in Macau!

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

April Showers

Well, it's the rainy season!  It turned to April and the skies let loose!  The heavy rain and monsoon started in March, actually, but it was the last couple days of the month! In Hong Kong, where I was the day before the torrential downpour, a mall's ceiling was destroyed and floods of water poured in because of hail.  The subways also became flooded.  It was crazy!  I was in the city above Hong Kong (Shenzhen) at that time, and it rained a LOT there too, with such heavy winds!  The kids didn't have school the next day because of it!

So it's going to be raining a lot this month.  I have to go for now, but I hope to post more later!

Saturday, March 22, 2014

The meaning of a string of numbers...

I was talking with my Chinese coworker who told me a story of a friend with an interesting phone number.  It was an unlucky number in Chinese because of what it sounded like.  Let me tell you some back story first.

In an awful comparison to what it's like in Chinese, think of a child saying the number '3'.  They actually say 'free'.  If they say "I'm free!" it can be humorous, because it sounds like something that they're not trying to say.

In Chinese, many words have multiple meanings.  For example, the number 4 is unlucky, because it is pronounced the same as the word 'death', which is pronounced "say" in Cantonese.  (But you have to say it in a low voice that goes slightly down in order to make the pronunciation correct).  They aren't pronouncing the word incorrectly, it is just the exact same word, tone and all.

So...to the phone number.  Her friend's phone number was 6969694.  In Cantonese, saying this string of numbers roughly translates to "I rolled down the stairs and died".

I hope you enjoyed the culture/language tidbit of the day!


Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Fun with friends

This past weekend my roommate and I were able to venture into China and get a few things accomplished.  We got haircuts, which were long overdue.  It was nice to get a head massage as is custom here before a haircut.  Thankfully they didn't try to wash my ears...they use a tool to scrape out the earwax, but it's almost like a half-circular knife, and I'm not a fan.

We were also able to have 9 other people join us to eat dinner across the boarder.  It was a lot of fun to have a group of friends with us.  I haven't been keen on taking photos lately, so I don't have any photos of the outing, except for one with my hair ready to get cut!  But that one will stay off the Internet ;)

I am busy preparing for classes this week and getting ready for a social event that we have going on here at the English Center.  It's a combined CEC/Church event, and we will be performing in a drama.  It's not quite a Passion play, but it's 5 different characters from that story telling their part.  My role is singing.  I'll be singing verses of  "Were You There" in Chinese and English between the people speaking.

The weather is getting warmer, and I even saw the sun today (though it was quickly covered by fog rolling in).  It's humid as always, and it went from cold to a little uncomfortably warm in the matter of days.

Yesterday was my day off, and I was able to make a family specialty--danish.  It is a very very delicious cinnamon roll, and my coworkers rejoiced ;)  It was fun to be able to make it and share it with everyone.  I don't do it often, as it takes a good chunk of the day to make it.

Just a note: it looks like next year my position will be changing: stay tuned to find out what it is!  I don't have a final decision as to what I will be doing, but change is in the future!  Once the decision becomes official and after I have shared with family, I will be sharing it with you!  I cannot be certain of when that will be finalized.

I don't have much to share.  If you have any questions (besides what I'll do next year!), let me know!

Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Shenzhen

Last weekend, my roommate Rachel and I had the opportunity to visit our friends who are living in Shenzhen.  It was so relaxing being able to visit, and we got to shop at some western stores (like the Gap!) and eat some western food!  They have a few more western things than we do, though they speak less English there than in Macau!

We took a ferry there from Macau, and it was quite convenient.  At the ferry terminal, we found the subway and took it to 2 blocks away from their apartment!  It was quite convenient, and we had such a great time with their family.  We also got to visit an international church aimed at expats.  It was fun to be able to participate in a worship service instead of doing a lot of administrative work for it.  It was good to have that!

I felt very refreshed after the weekend getaway, and it was difficult to come back!  But I am back to work now, and am in the process of scheduling times to go out with friends!  Hopefully this weekend some friends and I can cross the boarder to eat some Papa Johns pizza!

I am coming down with yet another cold.  I just got over being sick last week and now I feel sick again.  I don't know what it is about my immune system lately, but it's not doing awesome.  Please pray for me!