Sharing: The First Two Months of the Last Semester

          Our classes begin on Feb 23 and I am in intermediate level 2.  There are intensive reading, extensive reading, listening, writing and conversation classes.  After several weeks, I finally sign up for optional classes on HSK preparation, Tourism, and several classes for bachelor degree program: Chinese customs, Chinese Contemporary Issue, Geography.
            One of my Chinese friends visited to my dorm on Mar 3 evening so I cancelled my plan to attend the Saturday Mandarin Mass.  The next day, after attending the Mandarin mass, I visited Sr. Mary Clare as I still have time before Mandarin RCIA classes.  She invited me to attend a Lenten season retreat for volunteers.  At first, I said I couldn’t attend the RCIA retreat on Mar 17-18 as I would have a regional meeting, but then she said it’s not RCIA retreat and it’s on Mar 11.  So, the next day, I said I can attend the retreat.  The article about the retreat can be read in:
            Gao Zai invited me to have supper in his house since last semester so finally I visited his house after class on Mar 22.  All of us were standing in front of the picture of the Last Supper when his grandfather led the grace before the meal.  He called me (xiū)()   (=sister) and we had conversation about many things including his life story.  He, the fifth generation Catholics in his family, knew the work of Maryknollers in Meizhou in the old days.  After supper, we attended a Mandarin Mass in a parishioner’s house as there was a visiting priest from Shantou.   His grandfather introduced me to the priest who has two religious sisters.        

            Our Chinese Customs teacher assigned us to visit (xiǎo)(zhōu)(cūn)  a Xiaozhou village in  ()(xué)(chéng)University Town.  There are a lot of ancient spots including Ming Dynasty Well, Oyster Shell House, Liangma bridge, several artshops and family temples.   Two Vietnamese, one Mexican and one Equadorian friends accompanied me to visit this place.  When I was waiting my friends, a cleaning service in our campus wants to throw my bread plastic besides me, I thought he would also throw my drink so I spontaneously let him know that I still wanted the drink (maybe because in the restaurant near our campus, we should watch our tray as the cleaning service sometimes will pick up our tray even though we didn’t finish to eat yet).  He said that he only wanted to throw the bread plastic and then we continue our conversation.  He became my mandarin “teacher” that morning and he still offers to have conversation whenever I am free.
            I went to Hong Kong on Mar 13-15 as we had regional meeting so I had a chance to attend the Fun Day at school held by Parents Teacher Association.  There were coupons to play games with prizes or buy snacks.
            The classes are in the eight weeks so it’s time for the midterm exam on Apr 11-15.  My intensive grade is 77.5, listening is 67, and extensive reading is 80.  It’s the first time that my conversation grade is higher than my reading-writing and listening grades. 
            I enjoyed the visit of Choi Tai tai, Sr. Annie, Erna, Hedar and his wife in several different times.  As Sr. Arlene visited Guangzhou, so I introduced her to Gao Zai as she understands sign language.  I only could amaze to see how did they communicate in sign language, I asked Sr. Arlene to ask several questions which I couldn’t get the answer due to our limited communication.  A Maryknoll Affiliates Richard Perez and I visited and prayed with two Filipino patients and their families in Modern Hospital and then the next day we visited Cathedral, Our Lady of Lourdes Chapel and took the boat ride back to our campus to see the evening view of Pearl River.
            There is Labor Day break on Apr 29- May 1 so I went to Hong Kong after the classes on Friday evening.  I met Richard Perez in Kowloon Tong MTR station as he wants to donate for the baby of Vivian ( before he leaves for USA the next day.  Vivian called me when I was in Lujiang Guangzhou MTR to send off Richard, so I called Vivian upon arriving dorm.  She said her baby was shaking that morning and previous days, I asked several questions as I also don’t know what can I do for her, finally I invited her to pray together.  She hanged up our telephone conversation as she received another call and promise to call me again.  I missed her call and when I called her back, she said that after our prayer, a woman called to give good news about the medicine/treatment for her baby and another call for hospital to inform her that her baby can have EEG the next evening instead of end May. Thanks be to God for the good news (and also for the donation).  She would call her friends to borrow money for the EEG, that’s why I asked Richard to help.  The baby is being hospitalized now.            
Hong Kong, May 1, 2012

Sr. Anastasia B. Lindawati, M.M.
Let’s do simple things with simple love to make God’s love visible