MrMan has been taking Chinese for the past couple of months. He takes it only once a week, but is wowing me with his skills. His drawing skills seem to have laid a nice foundation for his character writing. And his pronunciation is great. I’d like to be more of a help, but not only is my Chinese rusty (like deteriorated and fallen to the ground), he’s in a class with mostly Chinese kids. There was a bit of a mix-up early on and he was put in the class with kids who are generally American-born children of Chinese-born parents. By the time it was figured out, he didn’t want to change classes, which would have put him with non-Chinese-Americans and would have meant that homework assignments were delineated in English. So far, my mother has been a huge help in making sure he gets his homework done.
I should probably clarify that neither I nor my mother are Chinese, though we both lived in China, at different times. She and my dad have taken Chinese off and on over the past eight years. This semester, Chinese School is a shared grandparent-grandson experience.
Funny story about race/culture/ethnicity: the other day, I was on the bus and the Vietnamese woman in front of me turned around and asked, “Are you Vietnamese?” While flattered, I had to say no. Another example of my fitting in nowhere and fitting in everywhere.