The Three Bottles of Water in my Life

by Christina, a Chinese English teacher in Kunming

These days are cold in Kunming, so I always need some more hot water to warm my body. When I was pouring water, suddenly I thought that I was this red empty bottle. I’m so thirsty. Who can give the water? I admit there are lots of people had given me countless help. But who give me the first bottle of water? It was my mother. She’s an ordinary woman and had worked in a factory for over 30 years. Now she’s retired and stays at home everyday. But I’ve been to an honest, polite, or kind to other person because of her. I still remember, when I was a student in Grade 3, I loved to eat strawberry so much. I found there were some strawberries outside of our school planted by the farmers who lived nearby. After school I went to the strawberry’s field myself, and picked up a lot of fresh strawberries until I was so full. I felt I was so lucky because no farmers or dogs caught me. Then I hurried home quickly and told my mom how lucky I was. But after hearing my story, my mother told to me “No free lunch at all.” She took me to the farmer’s home and had me apologize for my action. She also paid him 10 yuan for the strawberry I picked. I thought that my mother had poured me the first bottle of water. That is to be honest and courageous to correct my mistakes.

Who gave me the second bottles of water? I think it was the dean of English department. Her name is Ou’Yangming. She always takes good care of us just like her kids. And she knows each student’s needs very well. Before I was to graduate from university, I was confused what I can do in the future. I was the chairman of student union in the university, and also I loved to join all kinds of students’ actives, such as speech competition, dancing or singing. I even became a tourist guide when the World EXPO Garden was held in Kunming. Of course I earned some money, but I was still not sure about my job. I was not sure weather I could be an excellent teacher or other professionals. At that time, Mrs Ou told me:“You should be an English teacher in primary school but not in the middle school. You’re so smart, funny and active. The students will like you, and you have learnt English for many years. They need you. I think you have reasonability and ability to teach them to learn English very well. It’ll be your return to our society.” So I choose my job as an ordinary English teacher in a primary school called Chunyuan primary school. Until now, I’ve been a professional English teacher for 10 years. I think my choice is right, because I’m so happy everyday now, because the children I’ve taught are so pure, lovely. On every Teacher’s Day, they give me some little gifts to thank for my hard work. I feel I’m so lucky because I choose the right job for me, because I got the second bottle of water in my life.

Now after being an English teacher for ten years, I feel bored of the routine work. Sometimes I even imagine me like a famer and my students like the plants. My work is just like farmers planting crops in the fields every year. This feeling makes me very uneasy. But my mind has been changed by the Global Volunteers teachers who have come to teach us. I am shocked by their action. Many of them have retired, but they still fill every student with great enthusiasm. Everyday my dear teacher Danielle and Aleatha greet us with the most beautiful smiles. They are always so patient when talking with us even we have made lots of mistakes. Also, we have learned that Global Volunteers not only teach English in China, but also help special needs children, people in rural village. I am deeply inspired by your spirit. You have given me the third bottle of water in my life. Thank you so much!

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