Forward March

Forward March

I want to start off with something good here… Yesterday was warm with a light, cool breeze, and clear and sunny. It made me remember what it felt like to be full and alive again. I sometimes forget that I have seasonal depression (seasonal affective disorder). Having the warm sun against my skin was invigorating. I sat on the roof of my building for a couple hours looking out at the horizon and bathing in the sun. I felt the effects of yesterday today, but it’s wearing off. I need weather like that every day. Thankfully spring is coming, so hopefully more weather like that is on the rise.

I finished my first week of classes. I have one less than last semester, and one is strictly dedicated to movies… There’s even a textbook with the list of movies to watch and analyze… Ought to be a little fun if nothing else. One of my classes doesn’t start for another couple weeks, the beginner level English for teachers going abroad course. It seems all of my students are the same as last semester, and the textbooks this semester are actually relevant, so there is some good material to dig into. I suppose I’m looking forward to the semester.

I need to buy my ticket home in the next few weeks, but I haven’t decided if I want to come straight home, detour a little to rock climb in southern China, or make several stops along the way and visit friends a bunch of different countries. On one hand, I really want to fly straight home, on the other, I want to take advantage of the fact that I’m here and that I’ll be passing by so many places anyway to get back to the states. This has been tearing me up a bit for the past few weeks, trying to decide. What makes this worse is that I’m terribly indecisive on the little things like do I want to eat this banana or this apple or this orange, and then I sit there for like five minutes thinking about it… That’s a bit of an exaggeration, but you get the point, I have trouble deciding on the little things, now I have to decide on which flights to take and when and where… I wish I could teleport, that would make things so much simpler…

If any medical professionals happen to be reading this, or someone knows one real well… I recently developed a buildup of fluid in my left knee. It started after not moving for a while, I looked it up and found many possible causes, none fit. I’ve been doing light exercise and icing but neither seem to help. I’m not willing to go the hospital in this country, heard it’s way too much trouble unless you’re dying or something. So, if it doesn’t get better in the next couple weeks I’ll probably just cut it open and drain it, gross and dangerous yes, but it will be nice to be able to bend my leg again afterwards.

Maybe it’s just the extended exposure to sunlight I had yesterday, but I’m feeling really good again. I hope it stays.

Until next time, take care.


  1. Paul Costello

    Hi Dan,
    I’m glad that you are enjoying the beginnings of Spring and warmer weather. I look forward to seeing you when you return from China and I can understand your dilemma about whether or not to do some traveling before coming back. I am wondering if any of your options feel like a “should” instead of feeling energizing or exciting? I would go with the option that feels the most energizing to you.

    I am pretty concerned about the fluids and swelling in around your knee. Even though you don’t have much confidence in the hospitals there, you could go for testing and diagnosis just to get a sense of how competent they are and then decide on any further action. Perhaps also some of the staff at the college could give you some referrals of local health practitioners that they have used and like. Another possible treatment would be to use Chinese acupuncture… you are in China after all 😉
    It would be non invasive and safe. The idea of you cutting yourself open to drain it really scares me because of the risk of infection so I am asking you to not do that. There must be some competent health practitioners that can help you there. Please check into what your options are. I care about

    sending you love,

    1. For one, I was mostly joking about cutting open my knee, although I do know how to do so safely from intense first aid/response training some time ago. Concern noted though. Secondly, as it happened, the day after I wrote that, the fluid started dissipating and I can bend my knee now with less pain, so it’s going away.
      It kind of feels like a should, mainly because I was really excited about it several months ago and I’ll probably regret not going now, but part of me thinks it might be better just to travel sometime purely with the intention of rock climbing and visiting friends, which might make those things much more fun.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *