Big Trouble in Little China

You know, the movie from the 80’s…

To post or not to post…
Well, I promised to bring you the whole experience…the truth and nothing but, so here goes:
Sometimes it seems nothing in life is without issue, but I guess we humans would become complacent if everything ran smoothly. For the past 4 days, I’ve been fighting for my assignment; the one I payed for and traveled half way across the world for. During our hike into the mountains, my host family father informed me I would not be going to the monastery at all, but instead teaching at the orphanage and school he owns…for 14 hours a day! My assignment says I’m to teach English to monks in a monastery for 2-4 hours a day and have the evenings and Saturdays to myself. I was given many different reason as to why this change was necessary. Now mind you, I’ve gone through four months of gyrations putting this whole trip together because I wanted to spend time with monks in a monastery and learn about Buddhism. This whole trip is inspired and sponsored by the religious studies department of my school. My scholarship dictates that I do exactly what I came for. AND, I definitely don’t need practice babysitting!

I guess I didn’t expect to find this sort of thing in a country where everyone is so bent on being polite and making sure everyone is ‘happy’…Nothing like a good battle of the wills with a healthy language barrier! Somewhere in the back of my head, I remembered the other volunteers mentioning the last two girls on this specific assignment had some sort of problem, so after four days of trying to work it out on my own, I wrote the Kathmandu office. Then I called. It seems as though I will be allowed to start my assignment tomorrow, the 5th day after arriving. Perhaps I will no longer feel like a prisoner in this gorgeous land, having my every move watched and having to escape to brush my teeth. It has been morally difficult for me to challenge the people who are “taking care” of me, but they were also trying to take advantage of me. Now don’t get me wrong, the kids are very cute and somewhere behind all the strings, it’s a noble cause, but I didn’t pay to work 14 hours a day watching children. I have my own purpose I worked very hard for. I guess the moral is, don’t let others deter you from your purpose, and don’t be afraid to speak up and get what you came for.


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