Monday, May 26, 2008

Kindess of a stranger

Saturday I headed to the orphanage in the peculiar weather of a hail storm. I am not absolutely certain, but I believe this was my first hail storm in China. Hailing a taxi, I didn't care how much he was going to charge me; I just wanted out of the pelting rain and hail. I told the driver where I wanted to go, and he replied that it would be 10 RMB. That's fine, I replied. We then entered into a typical taxi discussion. Are you a student? No, I'm a teacher. Where are you from? America. Oh! You look like a Russian! I know, everyone says that. So you teach English? Yes. How long have you been here? 3 years. Do you like China? Yes, very much so. And so on. The discussion moved into the weather and how it was strange and terrible today. We turned down the road to the orphanage and he commented on how bad the road was. I apologized. Just as we were reaching the orphanage gate, he commented, "There aren't many taxis on this road." "Yeah, I know." "How will you get a taxi to go back?" "I just walk to the main road." "That's a long way!" "It doesn't matter." It was at this point that he surprised me with his kindness..."What time are you going to leave?" "4 o'clock." "OK, I'll come back to get you then." I was thrilled not to have to walk all the way down the muddy, wet street to the main road, and thanked him profusely. Sure enough, at 4 o'clock he pulled up to the gate to take me back. However, his kindness may have had a slight ulterior motive...on the way home he started commenting on my big beautiful eyes, gave me his cell phone number so I could call him for a ride at any time, and asked for my cell phone number. I only pretended to add his number into my phone and politely declined giving him mine. Regardless, his kindness was appreciated!

Here are a few pictures from the orphanage:

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