Starting the new semester

A few hours ago, I began my second semester at TsingHua University. Post-proficiency exam plus calculating in my grades from last semester, they’ve moved me up a level in the language program. When I learned about my results yesterday, I was quite disappointed as practically all my classmates moved up 2 levels, and I only moved up 1 level (from 中级1-中级2). This week is the whole sit-in stage so tomorrow I’m sitting-in the 高级1 class of my old classmates to determine whether or not I belong where I am now or I move up since going up to a level that’s too difficult for me would be a waste of a whole semester. I’m trying to tell myself that it’s all about the personal improvement and that one shouldn’t compare themselves with other people, but then as we were discussing in class awhile ago, sometimes a person can’t help but try to level themselves with other people.

Surprisingly though, I’m understanding things a lot better than I did last semester. Maybe it’s me getting used to the environment (习惯环境) or learning better, but it’s made me quite happy that I don’t feel as lost in class. In some way, my foundation compared to others in my class is not as good since a lot of them took their Chinese when they were much older while I had been made to study it since little and well I didn’t have the interest to learn it then, plus my school didn’t teach it well…but I’m coping. A lot of people have mentioned that my improvement has been quite good, and to my dad and other people, that’s what really matters. Maybe expecting too much from myself is not good, so trying to accept where I am now and staying optimistic is important.

Classes today were quite interesting though. Two of my teachers from last semester are my teachers for this semester again, despite me moving up a level. One of them had their class today though their subject got changed from 口语 to 泛读 though it’s quite funny that the teacher teaches the class the same way he did back in his old subject. Tomorrow, my 综合 teacher from last semester will be teaching my class so that’ll be quite interesting since she’s quite the teacher (I love her teaching style) and she’s familiar with my habits.

Tomorrow, me and my roommate will have to leave the flat earlier. Today, the 731 bus took forever to get to the stop, and well that (besides walking for over 20-30minutes or taking the bike in the cold weather) is the only option since 731 is the only bus that stops at 大石桥 which stops outside 东北门 of 清华大学 (which is the closest gate to the classrooms at C楼). Makes me wonder how the bike is doing since it’s been at the shed near the South Gate for the past 2 months (too lazy to bike in the cold weather). Also have to check up on 2 other bikes my friends left to me when they went home, so there’s that too.

Living in the new flat with understanding flatmates (2 of whom are local Chinese = oh yeah practice!) has been quite helpful though. One of the fears for this new semester was living with people we didn’t know well, but it’s been okay so far. They’re all older than me and my roommate so they’re quite kind to us, and we’ve been able to discuss with them situations regarding the flat (which have recently popped up). Knowing that they’re like that takes a big load off the shoulders, especially since this is the first time I’m living long-term with people I don’t really know.

Time is moving quite fast already and before I know it, it’ll be July and the end of another semester. But for now, I hope time doesn’t pass too quickly, but I hope that my improvement increases more than last time.



4 comments on “Starting the new semester

    • Hey Kevin! Workload is not too heavy. I’m finding that my understanding of Mandarin at the beginning of the semester is much better than it was a semester ago, so I’m quite glad about that. 🙂

      Hope you’re doing well over there. Stay safe!

      • That’s good to hear, there’s nothing more satisfying than knowing there’s been improvement. : D Ji xu jia you! Are you at the level where you can watch a drama without subs now? Haha.

  1. @Kevin: Definitely not! Haha. I can watch them with subs and understand part of what they’re saying. I watched Hua Mulan (the movie) and was surprised that I could understand some of what was being said. Even thought some of the original dialogue was better than the English translations. Lol.

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