Jin Gua Shih

ok while you're waiting for me to have something interesting to say, here are some pics from the eventful third week of camp at a little place we like to call Jin Gua Shih (well, that's its name)

A stop on the way up to the church, golden falls. There are gold and minerals in the water around here making all the rock orange. Since the camp was quite a ways from Taipei, we stayed in a homestay nearby. That in itself was interesting, the owner gave us lectures every morning about how drinking milk is "suicide" (he literally said that) and then fed us his own concoctions of soy milk and fruit/vegetable (heavy on the vegetable) smoothies. We got desperate and made a (over 30 minute) Starbucks run on the last day. Only half of our team went, but apparently the Starbucks was just opening (they were setting up but not selling coffee yet...) eventually they got us our 10 Ventis after they found out it was for Vickie! (She's really famous here in Taiwan, since she's been on the tv for a long time).

Gina, Tim, and Vickie practicing the music before the first day. The first day was probably the most "exciting" we were greeted upon reaching the school to the grounds keeper removing a freshly killed snake. The air conditioner didn't work the first day either, so we were sweating like crazy allll day! I couldn't wait to get into the shower that evening. Well the school was very "bu hao yi se" (they lost face) about the air conditioner, so decided to bring some people in to install a new one... in the middle of our class, directly over the students' heads. So we watched as the workmen tried to wrench the old one out (it was really ancient) and there was dust and debris flying everywhere. Suddenly there was a loud hissing sound and a mist coming out of the tubes, and we were advised that "it might be poisonous, so we should go outside" talk about lesson hijacks! Anyways, we spent the rest of the afternoon playing games under the sweltering sun...

Teaching in the mornings. Please enlarge picture to get the full impact of the bored expressions on our students' faces. We had to work hard to get them to overcome their attitudes and participate, actually, I don't know that they did overcome it... well they improved on the second day but the last day they were right back with the same thing.... i wanted to stop class and leave at one point, seriously, I was that angry. But in the end we had performances and water games and everyone left feeling good, so i guess that's all that matters.

Part of an old mine in the area, that could (in our opinions) easily pass for some kind of ancient temple ruin.

Looking out from where we stayed and from the school we could see incredible blue waters and rocky coastlines.

Students with Bessie after the water fight on the last day.

One group doing a line dance I taught them.

One of the performances.

Part of a dance "Love trusts at all times"

Playing an English game

Vickie taught us what is quite possibly the most hilarious game EVER. It's kind of like "telephone" but instead of passing a message along a line you pass a crazy face. It requires you very quickly to get over self-consciousness and within minutes has you laughing until your stomach hurts. Try it sometime I DARE YOU!