Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Language Translation Barriers and Bad Feet

"Science Friday" Recommendations
Friday night saw the crew and I going to the Train Bar (more on this later) for some much needed rest after a long week.  The events on Wednesday caused quite a bit of stress for my colleagues, while myself, more or less unfazed by the unsurprising chain of events (I learn quickly), I was still recovering from my illness and in dire need of a beer or three and then a good sleep.

As it turns out, there was no good sleep.  No good sleep at all.  The owner of the Train Bar seemedto be on good terms with a bunch of the foreign teachers here, so when he showed up he immediately had a round of shots brought over for us. Very nice guy, but I would have needed language translation services to understand anything he was saying.

So we spend Friday night out at the clubs and I did not get home until very early in the morning.  A bit of a throwback to my days in Buffalo, but my days here of getting up at 6:30 every day did not appreciate it.  Not one bit.  Bleary-eyed, sleep-deprived, and hungover I stumbled out of my bedroom to get showered, dressed, and caffeinated in preparation for our trip to the Banpo Village that Saturday afternoon.  At some point, for the second time already, I was not paying much attention to the angle of my step and I quite forcibly stubbed my little toe on the edge of a large chair.  Damn did it hurt.  Upon immediate inspection it appeared as though the nail had been bent in half and it very quickly turned purple.  OK, now it’s really hurting.

I slip on my shoes-very carefully I might add-and don’t bother to tie the left one. I limp out to meet my friends. I then limped to the closest street and we catch a cab.  The drive is about 15 minutes outside of the city.  I try to relax and focus on the scenery, which is mostly just dirty buildings, dust filled air, and excavations.

We arrive and enter the site.  At the front there is a couple of small museums holding various tools, implements, containers, and a number of prehistoric bones.  I limp through them, trying to keep my interest piqued despite the pain in my foot.  Shuffle, shuffle, throb, limp, throb.  Incensed by the pain, I try move quickly through the museums so we can get to the good stuff and subsequently get the whole ordeal over with.  This, of course, just causes my foot to hurt more, which in turn makes me want to move faster, which causes my foot to hurt more, which in turn … you get the point.  Eventually we made it through the entire thing. 

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