On the fence

What a week of ups and downs, yes’s and no’s, and just back and forth on the fence.  A week ago, I went to sign the contract.  And I did sign the contract.  I took the girls with me so they could see the school.

But as I was talking to HR, they gave me a list of things I have to do in order to transfer my work visa.  Go to the U.S. Consulate and get my college diploma notarized, get six passport pictures for each of us, reframe my resume in the official Chinese way, and on and on, but the thing that got me was that we might have to leave the country if my present employer doesn’t provide another list of things.  I don’t have the money for three of us to leave the country, even if it was just Hong Kong, Japan, or Korea.  I told them that then and there.  They said it was “Plan B” and they hope “Plan A” works, but about 60% of the time, it doesn’t.  At least they were honest.

I went to work later that day.  I had been sick for more than 24 hours with a fever, a sore throat, cough, horrible headache, and dizziness.  They let me go home after a few hours and I just couldn’t think about anything.  I slept for a day.

But I did have lunch with my co-worker/friend, Stephen, the Canadian who owns the pizza shop.  He said that everything’s going very well, and he’s doing well, so that if we need to leave the country, he can lend us the money and he said he’s done it lots of times.  It’s no big deal.

Still, the next day, I resolved that it wasn’t that much more money, and it wouldn’t make sense to take a job that costs me money up front.  I felt good with this decision, and called the girls to tell them.  Then Rumi said that we should talk about it home.  And we made a list of all of the good things and all of the bad things.  There were 8 things on each side.  Then we starred all of the really good things and the really bad things.  There were two each.

Then, I had lunch with Stephen again.  He said, “You never regret the things you do.  You usually only regret the things you didn’t do.”  (My marriage is an exception to this) He also reminded me that they are good with raises and promotions, whereas, we never get a raise ever.  Also, he said with the new visa regulations, I would still have to do all of that stuff at the consulate.

Then I received two texts from my friend Jodie, a driving service (reliable transportation to work) and the contact of a friend of hers who is also a teacher at this school.  We chatted for quite a while.  I now know about 8 teachers at this school, and more than 15 students.  After talking to Stephen and her, I completely went the other way and officially accepted the job after asking one more time if my girls could start at the same time.  They still can’t, but we can wait a semester.

So yes, at the end of August, I will be a Middle School English literature teacher for Xiwei International schools.  We are all excited and happy.

Sadly, we haven’t really been able to celebrate as we’ve all taken our turns to have the flu this week.  Sleeping on the couch and eating chicken noodle soup and jello has been the order of day.

On the kitten front, our new baby, Luna isn’t fitting in well.  She’s starting to try to be more sociable today, but before this, she had two modes: hide or growl.  It’s kind of funny because she had her tail broken off and it’s not even an inch long.  It looks more like a rabbit’s tail, but it’s hard to tell if she is happy.


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