Wednesday, February 16, 2011


Living life in another language and culture is always full of surprises. Like the surprise when you go to a market and one of the stall keepers hands you some free produce. Like the surprise when you go to a restaurant and you get a free cup of tea or coffee or a little chocolate with your coffee because they are excited to have a foreigner in their place of business. Like the surprise when a taxi won't stop for you because of the colour of your skin. Like the surprise of being pushed or bumped. Like the surprise of not being able to find what you need or want.

Or, like the surprise I woke up with this morning. I woke up to -6 degree Celsius temperatures in and outside of my apartment. I didn't think too much about it because coming out of a warm, cozy bed the morning air always feels less than nice. But when I went into my shower and realized that the water was refusing to warm up, I knew I was in for a surprise. Originally I thought it was just my building but once I got to school I realized that there was no heat here either. Later I found out the cause of my surprise, apparently a gas leak on the main campus caused the guard house to blow up in the middle of the night. The guard was injured quite badly from what I hear and the entire campus that supports thousands of people is without heat, hot water or gas. The real surprise here is that classes and schools weren't shut for the day in order to fix the problem like it would be at home in Canada.

Life overseas is full of surprises, not all good ones but not all bad either. I guess that's the exciting part of life lived in the expat way, everyday has the opportunity to surprise you!!!

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