I'm sitting in my and Katie's apartment right now, next to a fresh, warm plate of muffins Katie just baked, and a lit scented candle, drinking hot cocoa and admiring the coziness of our apartment on one of our first chilly nights. I'm anticipating students to show up at anytime for another one of our evening "studies". I love my life. I'm looking forward to this week and all the surprises a single week in China are sure to bring. We had a girl's study about peace the other day, and I thought to myself: When was the last time I felt so at peace? I really can't remember. I love being somewhere where I know I'm actually doing GOOD. I'm living for THE purpose. The only one worth living for. This makes those tough days (really, REALLY tough days) truly worthwhile.
Today is day 3 of the splitting headache that has been mercilessly plaguing me. Last night I actually went and got a genuine Chinese massage in an attempt to squelch it. The massage was wonderful.. and kind of painful. Today, I just feel wonderfully painful. I have actual bruises from the petite woman that kneaded my back muscles. BRUISES. I am in awe of her finger strength. *Pops a tylenol*
In other news, I got a bike yesterday. Thanks to one of my students, Alex. I mentioned to Alex one day that I was looking to purchase a second-hand bicycle, and what do you think happened then? He and his friends posted flyers about purchasing a bike all over campus, met with a perspective bike sales girl, tried out the bike, bargained it down, and, finally, called me. I had no idea any of this was going on. This is a prime example of friendship in China. I'm learning that I have to make sure not to mention any little desire in front of a Chinese friend unless I expect them to dedicate their lives to the cause until the need is met. It blows me away. And while it is fantastically sweet and kind, it makes me feel nothing short of terrible to cause someone so much trouble.
Anyway, it's yellow and fabulous. :) (The bike) I rode around for an hour on it today and discovered parts of campus that I never knew existed. I don't even mind that everyone stares at me and honks at me relentlessly as I ride it. (That's a lie.) I'm trying to enjoy it while it's still warm(ish) and while I can (I've been promised that it will get stolen from me by every Chinese person I know.. I'm pretty sure my Chinese friends worry about me more than my mom ever did.)