This is a very overdue update, I’m sorry! It’s been a crazy three months since I last wrote. I have too much to tell, so I’ll leave the stories of my Australia trip for another email. This one will be an update on my CDs and my new life in Beijing!
- CDs now on sale in USA, Australia and China (and available by post to pretty much everywhere)
- Housewarming party – Sunday October 24th!
- I LOVE MY NEW HOUSE!
- Still need a new flatmate
- I love my job :)
There are plenty of CDs available in the US and Australia, which can be shipped for $3 ($5 for overseas). Buy an album through paypal anytime (just search my email address) – $25 AUD/$22 USD plus shipping – and include your postal address. I can also accept Australian bank transfers – email me if you’d like to set that up. If you would like to pay online by credit card let me know and I’ll send you an invoice with instructions on how to pay.
The 800 copies that were shipped to China are back in the US and I’m working on getting them over here again (but there goes about $1,000 in shipping). I brought some into China from Australia so they’re for sale here. There’s a small box in the CCC lobby on Sundays. If you want to buy one but don’t go to CCC, just get in touch with me and I’ll make sure you get one! I usually have a few discs with me wherever I go, so if you see me you can probably buy one from me :)
Date: Sunday October 24th
Time: 2pm-5pm (feel free to stay later, but Bec will be off to work then!)
Bring: Snacks/drinks to share
Bec and I are finally hosting a housewarming party. I know it’s not the best time for some people, but if we don’t do it now we’re pretty much back to December, which seems a little overdue even for us. You are ALL invited! Although I don’t really expect to see anyone who isn’t currently living in Beijing ;)
New Flat in Wangjing
This new place is without doubt the most at home I’ve felt since leaving my parents’ place. I love living here. There are some not-so-optimal points about the house, but most of them are the flipside of great benefits – so it all works out. It’s about 200m2, with three bedrooms (including the huge master bedroom with ensuite that I use), a second bathroom, a large living room, long and very practical kitchen, and a large study (for my study and studio and storage). I’ve attached photos – there’s an explanation of them at the bottom.
The house is organised and lived-in now, although the study is a huge mess. There are a lot of things in there the landlady will be taking in December and I’ve given up trying to set up the room properly until then. I’ve already hosted youth group, cooked for people, and had girls stay over – and it works wonderfully for all three! We also have a housekeeper now. She just started but we love her already – she’s amazing! She doesn’t just clean (very well) she also tidies up in a way that is really helpful to us both. Under her influence I’ve spent my holiday organising all my stuff and unpacking things left from the move from Langfang.
It’s great to be living with Bec again! She’s a lovely person and we’ve always got along well. She really encourages me! I really enjoy having another Chinese speaker/singer around to ask for advice and assistance on various language/music projects – especially given that she’s a sight better at both than I am. No, that’s not self-deprecating, that’s a measure of how amazing she is! She also loves Mark – she’s definitely his favourite. We do, however, need to find our third flatmate soon! Rent is due in under 2 weeks (4 months’ up front) and if we have to pay that extra share again, I’m not sure where the money will come from. There have been numerous people interested in the past 4 months, but it’s just never worked out. So if you know anyone who would like to live a 10min walk from line 13…
Okay, so I don’t exactly have a single job. I have lots of stuff on my plate. I still work about 10 hours a week (from home) for Imports Oriental – the company I worked full time for the past two years. My contract with CCC (my church) for youth work there is 20 hours a week. I do another 20 hours of youth work stuff, some with BICF, some additional to my CCC contract, and some just general “on my own” stuff – in particular, following up with kids who don’t live in Beijing. Add to that 10 or so hours a week for music (writing, recording, and worship team) and I have a pretty busy schedule! The thing is, when I’m done “working,” I’ve done all the things I want to do! It’s amazing. I’ve very fortunate to have the opportunity to do what I love, and make enough money from it to get by.
It hasn’t been an easy adjustment, however. Most of what I do outside the house is highly extroverted activities. It’s very important for me to find a balance where I get enough alone-time to recharge – but it’s hard when I’m now in town and have a flexible schedule and there are so many people I could see and so many things I could do! I think I’m starting to find the balance I need, but I’ll probably have to keep watching it closely. It’s difficult when I really WANT to do so much! I’ve been back about 6 weeks now, and after the first 2 I started to really struggle with it, and got quite depressed for a week or so. In the last two weeks I’ve got back to a pretty good balance, and this last week (October break holiday) has been great! I’ll just have to be careful that I maintain balance :)
Well, that’s the news from Beijing! I’ll start working on stories and photos from The Tour of Cambodia and Australia so look for that in the next week or so!