Last week Heather, a new friend from church who also lives in our neighborhood, stopped by to see how I was adjusting and see if she could help. She let me complain about slow internet and she offered suggestions about where and how to get food. She told me that there is a Papa Johns not too far away, and they have BOGO pizza on Monday nights, and they deliver AND they speak English. She said she utilized this resource frequently in her first few weeks. I was pretty excited to have that option come Monday night.
So Monday night rolled around and I called the number she gave me. The first two times I dialed, the call didn’t go through, finally on the third try I got a recorded message, I pushed the designated number for ordering and was connected to a live person, who did speak English. Unfortunately I could not understand him, and I’m also not familiar with our address yet. Memorizing our address here has tripped me up a bit because translating Chinese addresses into English and then communicating them back to a native Chinese speaker is complicated.
After saying “I’m sorry, what was that?” and “Could you say that again?” an uncomfortable number of times, I handed the phone to Richard because he has our address memorized already. He likewise repeated himself and asked for clarification multiple times but was unable to effectively communicate with the pizza guy and that was that.
Feeling totally incompetent and discouraged I messaged Heather and asked her what address she uses (she lives around the corner) and she generously offered to take care of it for us tonight. She ordered our pizza and had her daughter bring it over when it was delivered.
I am so grateful to be surrounded by helpful people. In nearly every circumstance we’ve needed help, we have had someone there to step in and have our needs met. I really can’t adequately express what a relief this has been and what a difference it has made for us to accomplish everything we need to build our life here.
Having said all that, being so completely dependent on other people is such a challenge for me. I want to be assertive, I want to navigate my own way and learn how to do things for myself and my family. But there are some things I really just can’t do.
I can’t even order a pizza on my own. It’s both frustrating and humbling.