Today was registration day.
I walked in the office and noticed all Asian people. I think, hmmm where do I go, so I keep walking down the hall. A lady stops me. "You need to take a number!" Ok where? She points to the mass of asian people. I think to myself. These people all need to learn Chinese? Well, turns out, they are all Korean and Japanese. How ethnocentric am I?? Why did it never occur to me that most of my peers would be Asian! Yes other Asians need to learn Chinese too!
Wow there's a lot of them. So I wait in my seat and finally a non asian face- a lady from India sits next to me. We talk for a while. An hour passes, and then my number is called. I get my picture taken and receive a student id for Donghua University. Then I wait in line for another number. I meet a Korean girl named Katie and the only other American, a Chinese American guy from Michigan, named Mike. We get to know each other and I realize quite quickly we won't be ending up in the same class for both of them don't know any Chinese. I scoped out the rest of the scene. It appeared the only students that really knew any Chinese were the Japanese and some Korean. All the western faces would be in the beginner class.
Then I realized...hmmm if I'm with all the Asians, so much for any hope of the class being conducted in English.
When I take the placement test, my tester seems quite pleased with my reading skills and for the most part with my speaking skills too. She places me in the advanced class. "Wait!" I say. I don't want to be in the beginner class but I don't want to be in the advanced class. Can I be in the middle class?" Apparently there is only two types of class. Ahhh, watching a few people tested, I figure out real quickly that I will be the only western face in the advanced class. I don't speak any Korean or Japanese so it may be hard to make friends.
We'll see. I'll try my best. I really do want to use this opportunity to make friends since the program isn't just language but also trips and cultural activities as well.