One of the biggest blessings of our entire year has been hosting DJ, our 10-year-old superhero-in-waiting, in our home for the summer.
One of the second biggest blessings has been having our dear Chinese tutor and friend, Miss Mackenzie, here a few hours a week to help us learn Chinese and serve him BETTER.
Yesterday, Mackenzie, the sweet college student who bakes us brownies and teaches our kiddos piano songs in Chinese, met DJ for the very first time. And from the moment he realized that she spoke Mandarin, this little guy barely took a breath. Before he even introduced himself, he asked her, “Do you have a pool in your backyard? Swimming is so much fun!” Followed by, “What toys do you have at YOUR house?”
Throughout the morning, our chatty little man opened up to Miss Mackenzie about his likes (swimming, the beach, swinging outside) and dislikes (too-hard hugs — he told Miss Mackenzie that “Ayi (me) hugs many hugs with much strength” :)). We learned that DJ just completed third grade in China and that he loves to read and write. That he goes to school for several hours per day and then returns to his facility in the later afternoon, where he watches television, studies and then sleeps each night two to a bunk bed.
We also learned that he loves the United States.
More than once yesterday, DJ told Miss Mackenzie that he was an American. When she asked him if he liked it here, he told her he thought he would come back next summer. I asked her to verify that he understood that he was only here for one month as part of an international camp, and he understood very clearly.
And yet again, he told her he was an American.
Although after yesterday's afternoon eye appointment, where Dr. Barry Kavanaugh, the SWEETEST optometrist, made DJ’s first exam EVER a total BLAST, he told us he knew why he had 20/20 vision.
“We Chinese have good eyes,” he told Miss Mackenzie as he buckled himself into the car.
So he hasn’t TOTALLY given up his heritage after only 10 days in a new country. ;)
While we had the luxury of a woman who speaks fluent Chinese in our home, I asked Miss Mackenzie if she would mind conducting a short interview with DJ, just so we could learn more about him. She enthusiastically agreed, and THIS is the result.
Introducing DJ … in his very own words. <3