Tuesday, November 06, 2007

The Good, the Bad and the UGLY

Oh I am lame with my titles. How unoriginal…

Good news is…I am feeling more positive and happier than I have been.
Last week (ok and yesterday), all I wanted to do was sleep. I would drop Anju off at school, then come back home and sleep until…noon sometimes. This pattern threw my sleeping schedule off, so I started to get insomnia again – well I have been waking up at 4 or so.

Anyway, starting , ah this morning actually, I DIDN’T go back to sleep because I volunteered at the Center and chatted with lots of sweet FOREIGNERS! You know, AMERICANS. I am always happier on days when I volunteer. I couldn’t for the last 2 weeks and have been missing it something awful. I bought a GORGEOUS photograph (it will be framed by the photographer) of a goddess’ hands in prayer that was taken in Thailand. I always get myself in trouble buying books or handicrafts/artwork at the Center!

Yesterday, my cleaning lady (she helps out twice a month only – I am not THAT spoiled, ok?) showed how kind and thoughtful Taiwanese people are. She wouldn’t let me leave the house until I wore a jacket, and she MADE SURE that I zipped it. She only speaks Chinese, and I caught one word, “bing” which means “cold.” She mimed shivering and sneezing to drive her point home. Well taken, and very much appreciated, Mrs. H. She’s probably younger than me, but I will always need mothering. Anyway it’s “unseasonably” cool now. It must be oh, I don’t know 60 degrees? Let me check Underground Weather. Hang on. It’s 71 degrees/22 celsius today! It may have been 66/19 celsius yesterday! People are wearing scarves, fur lined hoods… crazy! We haven’t seen the sun for weeks… wah!

More good: we had custom made curtains made in the fabric district which is located in the oldest part of Taipei. I promise to take pictures of this quaint little area. Cobblestone streets, nice (OLD) brick buildings – Chinese markets selling all sorts of odd Chinese medicines. It’s a cool area. Anyway, the curtains look LOVELY. Really perked me up after putting them up…but I hurt my neck doing it – I didn’t get Anjoli’s up because it hurt too much. I am a bit bummed about that. It’s feeling better today though, so maybe tonight I will give it a go.

The bad is: I don’t understand why I can’t connect with Taipei American School moms. I (already whined about this w/lyricgirl/Sue) but…I have had one of Anjoli’s friends from her class over twice. I even took her and Anjoli to a children’s museum, and took them to lunch, then dropped the child off at her home via taxi. Whenever I see the mom at school she ignores me. I helped out at a Halloween party, and the mom completely blew me off- well, she smiled at me once. I made a point to chit chat to her, but she is just really frosty. She even told her daughter that she wanted to meet me after hearing about Anjoli incessantly in September. She WAS friendly when I first met her back in September, but now won’t give me the time of day. Anjoli’s friend insists that she will have Anju over for a playdate, but that hasn’t happened. Oh well. Another mom that I met (who has younger kids) also is elusive, but she talks to me more, at least. Still, she doesn’t seem very interested in having lunch or anything (her husband invited us over though! Well, he said, “you should come over, since we’re neighbors”).

BUT! There is one glimmer of hope- Anjoli and I were invited to a mom’s apartment yesterday for a class on Hinduism for kids. I enjoyed it more than Anjoli (she said it was “Ok”). I don’t view myself as Hindu (yet!) and poor Anju doesn’t know what she is either – but I want her to learn about Hinduism since she is half Indian. I really enjoyed chanting, but Anjoli was very shy about it. Anjoli wished the kids were nicer – one is in Anjoli’s grade but she is really quiet and reserved. Anyway, Betty – the teacher – invited us to her house this Saturday to celebrate the Indian Festival – Diwali – which is the Festival of Lights. We’ll pray and eat delicious food and then light firecrackers, etc. I am very happy to finally socialize. Betty has lived here for 19 years – she moved here from Bombay right after graduating from college. It feels good to have met a rooted expat. She’s very very sweet and kind.

Anjoli is having a hard time this week – missing home and her dad (he’s gone on an 11 day business trip). I hate that after she does her homework she can’t just run out and play with her friends. That’s the hardest thing about living here. She starts soccer this Wednesday though. Can’t WAIT!! We ran a few nights last week at a local running track just to get outdoors. We are jogging/walking in a 5k run for cancer research with her school in downtown Taipei this Sunday (The Terry Fox Run). Should be fun – but it’s at SEVEN A.M. YOWZA!!!

The UGLY is my poor husband who is doing business in Korea (he was in China last week) ran into a bad situation – his laptop was COMPLETELY taken over by a horrible virus. For some reason his anti-virus software stopped working. What a nightmare. He got it working a bit though last night (after getting the blue screen of death). He has had a successful trip though – he found people to distribute his cameras in Korea. (He designs “smart cameras” for inspection of manufacturing materials such as the film used in LCD screens).

Ok I just realized that NOTHING is ALL good, bad or ugly...
Except MAYBE this video!
My friend Chelice sent it to me the other day. We both agree it is highly sensationalized,but it exposes the ugly truth.

Hope you are all well.

Lots of love,


Anonymous said...

I will refuse the be chipped!

LMS said...

Maybe it's just because you're one of my favorite people, but I'm going to say something very cliche.

The other mothers don't realize what a great friend they're missing out on.

I'm beat, and suddenly realize I haven't showered in two days. Ewww... plus I saw the Shout Out Louds last night (oh Sweden!) so this needs to be remedied. Interview on Thursday! Please pray, I might lose my mind if I'm at the bookstore much longer!


Anonymous said...

Well, maybe it is best that those other mothers that you have met so far are not being buddies with you. At least you know up front what kind of character they have; and you my friend are much better than that! And if I know you...you don't want anything too superficial! So, be patient(is the correct spelling:)! Eventually, the road will lead you to places with people who appreciate all the wonder of you! Be strong and know that you have been perfectly created (hmmm, does that word imply that I/we believe in a creator of some sort?). Sounds like a great late night spicey conversaton for someday. Anyway, you have us, your blog friends for now. Not everyone appreciates us free-spirited, independent thinking, strong, artsy-fartsy women. I suppose some are intimidated by the love that radiates from our hearts!


Love ya bunches, Chelice & Leo

grace said...

the video is no longer available. bummer.

Hi Sue, People are funny, don't take it to heart. She doesn't know what she is missing being your friend. :) I am pleased to hear you are feeling happier.


grace said...

The video worked for me this time Sue.

Big Brother is watching, is what went through my mind. The free thinkers seem to be disappearing.
good video.

Suesjoy said...

Hello Chelice-
NFW will I EVER be chipped!!
No way Jose.
Aw thanks for your kind words. No I am not good in the superficial department.
It will just take time...I mean it took me 10 years living in SD to meet someone cool like YOU!

Laura- not to be egotistical, but I agree!
har har har. Seriously, I was thinking the SAME thing! It's their loss. You know, this woman has 3 girls and they all get out of school at different times, so she has her hands FULL. She always looks stressed.
I took the easy way out by having one kid - and she is good as GOLD. I am so lucky, but I always KNEW I could NOT handle more than one.
But now, I am a bit sad that I DIDN'T have one more.
I always pray for you, my dear. Like I said, my prayers always get answered! I will pray hard(ER) for ya though. MUAH. xxxx

Hi Grace-
Thank you my dear. I am just way too sensitive and a bit paranoid (esp. becuz of my droopy mug). Thank you, I won't take anything personally (that's one of the Four Agreements - which is a fave book of R&P's).

Glad you got to see the video.
Big Brother IS watching. I fear for Anjoli's generation (as Chelice does - she's a wonderful elem. school teacher).


lryicsgrl said...

Now I won't sleep for days, thanks a lot ;)
To chip or not to chip?
Well, I think I'll just go back to money under the mattress, and jewels sewed into the soles of my shoes....that is how many eastern europeans survived...they didn't trust banks, and nor do I.

You know how I feel about the culture of "mommyhood"....You have to cut yourself some slack, there my friend. You are going thru many changes all at once. You are a survivor, and I've no doubt you will eventually find the right group of friends. You are such a beautiful person, so you will attract the same. By the same token (what ever that means) you will repell the opposite. Makes sense, right? I am just saying those other Moms just may not be good enough for you, right now. Give them time, they may come around.

I love the fact that you and Anju went walking/running together. I can't think of any time that either of my girls would do that with me ;(

Btw, I would never, ever in a million years call you a "whiner". So, stop that, this instant young lady! Don't make fun of my friend ;) My mom used that psychology on me as a child, she would tell me that if a stranger said the things about me, that I said about myself, she would have to punch them (she was from the Bronx) My point? Be easy on yourself Susie Q...And, guess what? If you had "help" every day, that would not make you spoiled, just smart!! LOL

I loves ya!

Now off I go.....

MargieCM said...

Just a quick pop-in Sue, but I just had to comment on those American "moms" yoy wrote about. Surely they must know that as an expat you will be feeling isolated and in need of a familiar social circle at times - no matter how keen and willing you are at being a local. Do they not remember how it must have been for them at first? Or perhaps they are a clicque-y bunch who find it difficult to embrace newcomers? It's such a shame, as you're obviously so willing to make the effort. I really feel for you and Anjoli. I'm sure they'll thaw in time though - it's pretty hard to freeze out good, warm people.

Glad to see there's a lot of good still going on for you though.

Lucy said...

Nothing I hate more than cliques (as Margie references). And cliquey moms can be the worst type. And the most gossipy. Don't let 'em get to you, Sue.

Sounds like Betty may turn out to be a good friend though (even though she's the teacher).

I loved reading your latest entry and about the Diwali celebration. Some of the Indian students that work with me in the library mentioned it today.

You seem like a truly neat person, so, like I said, don't let those snobs get to you.

Suesjoy said...

Thank you SO very much Sue, Margie and Lucy for your heartfelt and beautiful comments.
I get by with a little- no A LOT of help from my friends!
I truly appreciate your sweet comments, ladies.

The cold mama is warming up - I think she is just very stressed. She chats more to me.
I will see both her and the other mom at a luncheon/holiday bazaar fundraiser for St. Lucy's - a group of orhanages in Taiwan.
The other mom is talking to me more now.
I am probably a wee bit paranoid, and like I said before- it takes time to make friends. I can't expect to make them overnight, I realize that.

Sue you crack me up. Yeah well, this girl will never get a chip. I can't understand how anyone would...
Sorry if I scared ya.

Lucy - we didn't make it to Diwali- Anjoli has a head cold. Bummer.
Oh well..next year.

Margie - in my latest post I talk about Jane - SHE is a sweetheart. I won't get discouraged re: the American School Moms. I met a great mom through the Center. I think I am having better luck meeting people there. I am not one for cliques at all. Never was.


Tink said...

Exactly. Don't let 'em get you down.

I finally got to watch this video. I always said that too. "I'll never let 'em chip me." I also said I'll never let 'em dictate a vaccination - monstrous vaccination plan - to me and the kids. I'm not averse to some of them and those given on a rational, safe schedule. But did you read what Maryland did this week?

A notice, served and abetted by the schools: Parents - were ordered to immunize their children or face jail time.

You bet Big Mama's out there. She and Big Bro are not lookin' after our best interests. No matter what kind of line they feed us thru the media plugs.


Makes me sad to look at America these days. And bottom line .. what can ya do?

Lucy said...

Hi Sue,

I finally watched this vid.

Scary. And infuriating. Lately I'm angered by so many things. Must mean I'm finally growin' up!

How's school?

Love to ya this weekend,
Lucy (p.s. I showed Jessie some of your Taiwan pics on your blog this evening. We're just dreamin'.... (hint, hint :-D)