Day 36 - Subterranean Plaza

Monday, March 14th, 2016
Smog Level: 0/3 Mountains

It’s a good day today! The wind blows some of the smog away, and I listen to classic Chinese music (the stuff with the really high-pitched women singing) wafting in the windows as we blow the stale air out of the apartment. I write and get some posts up because, hey, the smog isn’t the only thing that decided to clear up a bit! Hello, internet!
I take a stroll the long way to the bus stop, leaving Shimou in bed as I hold my head high and listen to the last of The 4 Hour Chef. Great book, I highly suggest it! The bus promptly arrives and I saunter into the school gate, no problems getting in, drop off my stuff and grab lunch. Turns out we have a staff meeting, which I didn’t know about and had just enough time to eat lunch and attend! One brief meeting later, I have lots of time to prep the classroom and catch up with my Chinese coteacher.

The kids were largely well behaved, and afternoon classes are only 35 minutes. So hey, even if they are bad, who cares? Deal with ‘em, then they’re outta your hair. Time was cramped because I had to both do warm up, redefine old words, let them study for a few minutes, give a test, then introduce new words… and do this all in 35 minutes somehow. Then reading for a 35 minute session, which can sometimes be painfully boring. Wash, rinse, repeat. The kids are great, so even when it's bad, it's still good.

After work, I bus home, eat, write, then head to the third gym that’s nearby for a trial run. So far the options are an OK-ish gym for ¥3600/13mo, another which is OK-ish for ¥1500/12 mo, and this last one. Apparently it’s underneath the… Walmart. Of all places, right?

Hangout Area
Shimou and I walk to Walmart and find a way to the B2 floor. If you recall, last time we were here, we only went to B1, expecting B2 to be more of the same. Nope. It’s an entire underground plaza down there with plenty of stores. So weird. I never would have expected it there.* That's what the main picture of today is, the one at the top. It's what we discovered underneath Walmart.

We go through the same rigamarole of them trying to show us how to use the equipment. I duck out after a couple machines and go about my workout, leaving the two attendants to follow Shimou around. The place was alright; under construction, further than the other two, and still about ¥3800 for 2 years. Would be a  good deal if I knew I’d be here that long and had money to burn, but… pass. Cheap, closer gym it is!

Back at the apartment, we clean up and I pass out almost immediately while Shimou works on her resume. The job hunt begins!

Words of the Day
English - Mandarin [pronunciation]
head - tóu [toe?] (confusingly...)
Arm - shǒubì [show-bee] (careful to pronounce this one properly… shǎbī is a pretty big curse word, which means, roughly, "stupid c***")

Editing Music
Little Red
Cathy Davey

*In fact, I annoyed Shimou by repeating it until she finally acknowledged me

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