A Travellerspoint blog


The Meat Market

sunny -19 °C

The meat markets will make most people cringe. It certainly does make me cringe but I've learnt to look the other way. Most people know that in Asia many foods are eaten that we in the west would find too difficult to eat.

In China we also know that the Chinese people will eat anything. I guess when there are 1.3 B people to feed and poverty and starvation has played a huge role in their 5000 year history, that this is more a case of reality and not choice. Their taste buds and sensitivities are different to ours.

We are horrified about dog meat. The Chinese are shocked at our reaction to the thought of eating dog meat. I am keen to report that it isn't the household pet that is eaten but dogs which are specially bred for this purpose. Dog meat is a delicacy.

Posted by Bettinamc 05:40 Archived in Australia Tagged food Comments (0)

Telling my friends and family of my intentions.

sunny 27 °C

I am a Taurean under the western horoscopes and a Dog under the Chinese Years. What does this mean...............
I am loyal, stubborn, not keen on change and a home body. I enjoy life's luxuries and stability. No one would ever dream that I would give away my safe and secure lifestyle for the unknown!

Telling my parents.............
This was always going to be difficult. I'm the youngest, the only one not married and I have no children, therefore my parents still think I need taking care of although at my age my mother had had 5 children and me being her youngest was 11! Added to this, was my Mother was about to lose her sister to Cancer. No time was going to be a good time to tell them. Sadly my Mother lost her sister on 16 February.

My parents invited me for dinner on Sunday 24 February. By this stage we had attended the funeral and this was my opportunity to tell them. I gathered my certificates and the information and took them with me. When I arrived at my parents I left them in the car, not knowing if this was going to be the right time or not.

Over dinner Maurice asked me what was knew. I told him that nothing was knew today but tomorrow I would be resigning. Mum then asked if I had another job to go to. Which I responded with, "Yeah." Mum wanted to know where. When I told her China her jaw dropped. I can still picture it now. Maurice was not overly joyed about my decision and wanted to know why they were only finding out about this now when I obviously hadn't thought about this overnight. I told them that I knew Mum would be worried about me and that I didn't want to add to the stress she was already feeling from losing her sister in the near future. Mum agreed with this. I'm still not sure that Maurice was convinced but knew that he would come around.

In enters my Grandmother. Mum gives me the look that I know means to tell Nana. Nana had a completely different outlook and one I was not expecting from a 92 year old woman. She said, "You go love, you don't want to die wondering what if I had of gone to China." I guess this comes from just losing your daughter at the tender age of 66.

Telling my brother and sister.............
When I told Paul he was, "good on you mate," although I think he was probably thinking why would she want to do that.
When I told Wendy she was how exciting another adventure in your life, something else for you to do. Have to admit didn't expect that response from Wendy, but happy with the positive outlook. Told her that when Mum rang her, as we both knew she would, she will need to reinforce this!

Telling my friends...................
Deleece was very supportive and helped in any way she could. One of my biggest issues was what was I going to do with Angel. Deleece made an assumption that she would take her. I could never have asked her because her cat Jimmy is her soul mate and he has never been fond of Angel, although she was in love with him at one stage of her cat life! Getting closer to the time I made a comment, "Why do I also have to do the extreme? Why can't I just be normal like everyone else?" Deleece replied with. "Bloomin heck mate, I don't know why."

Sharon was so concerned about me going. She thought I might have been sold off as a slave upon my arrival. Tim suggested to Sharon that I move into Sharon's home. Sharon and Tim came over the Wednesday before I moved out of my home and did my gardens for me. I can not express in words my thanks. This overwhelmed me. I am so fortunate to have such fantastic friends.

Nikki didn't know what to say. She knew I was doing what I wanted to do, but also knew it was something that a lot of people wouldn't understand.

Posted by Bettinamc 21:13 Archived in Australia Comments (0)

I'm out of here....................

sunny 36 °C

On the 21 February I handed in my resignation with an end date of 21 March, expecting I would be walked that day. This didn't happen. However a week later on 28 February I was given my marching orders. Fairly poor game plan to give me no notice given the commitment to my various positions over the 7 years I had been with the organization. However, saying this, this is the reason I was leaving. My decision was justified by the behavior.

This worked to my advantage because I was to start in China on the 20 March! Now the fun begins. I have a list a mile long of things I have to do before my departure. These include maintenance on my home, contact real estate agents to rent my home, packing and storing my belongings, canceling the utilities, arrange for my rates and body corp bills to be sent to the agents on all my properties, advertise my car to sell it, organize my cat, book flights, get a visa, update my will and POA, check my income protection policies and life insurance, consider whether I want an international drivers license, develop photos, get prescriptions filled, putting my gym membership on hold, trying to get an appointment with the endocrinologist, renewing my Drivers license, buy a mobile with international roaming capabilities, buy phone credit, go and collect winnings from the Melbourne Cup, suspend my Health Fund, arrange travel insurance, cancel car insurance, cancel RACQ, add signatories to my accounts, cancel home and contents insurance, sort out my Margin Lending Account, see the accountant, arrange removalists, cancel my dentist appointment for January 2009, organise mail redirection, get the carpets cleaned, organise shares, etc.

Yes I was overwhelmed by what I had to do. But I worked through the list and everything fell into place.

I had a departure date of the 17 March flying Qantas from Brisbane to Sydney, Sydney to Beijing, stay overnight in Beijing and then the next day fly from Beijing to Jinan. The school will send the driver to pick me up in Jinan for my adventure.

I had just 17 days to do everything.

On the 15 March I will have dinner with family and friends at Tomato Brothers to say farewell for 10 months. I will miss them of course, but will send emails, letters and speak to them on the phone.

Posted by Bettinamc 20:45 Archived in Australia Comments (0)

The Start of My Adventure

sunny 25 °C

It was Christmas 2007, a friend I had met whilst travelling in Asia in December 2006 had sent me an email talking about his upcoming backpacking adventure. I would really have loved to join him but the timing was all wrong. I had only just come back from Brazil and needed to save some money before I went travelling again.

This got me searching the net on places to go. Whilst searching one of those annoying pop-ups caught my eye "Travel the world and get paid". This sounded like a fantastic solution. No need to save! I looked into it further. Before I knew it I had signed up to do a TESOL (Teach English to Speakers of Other Languages) course. By the 11 January the information had arrived.

I was focused. I saw this as an opportunity to travel and also get out of an employment situation I was most unhappy in. I had signed up to do the Foundation Course, Tutoring, Business English, Hospitality and Catering and Elementary.

I spent every night doing 3 hours of study. My weekends were consumed with completing this study. I had given myself to Easter to complete the course. By the 14 February I received a valentines present, - My Teaching License. It arrived in the mail on the 19 February. That night I got on the internet and started applying for jobs. I applied for 15 positions across the world. By the 23 February I had 14 contracts.

Now I had the task of deciding which job to take. I completed a spreadsheet and got down to 6. I then made my final decision. That contract fell over. Within 1 hour of that falling over I was in contact with my second choice and the green light was on. I was off to China. OMG what have I done!!!

Posted by Bettinamc 02:54 Archived in Australia Tagged educational Comments (0)

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