Our trip south a few weeks ago did a lot to boost my self confidence. I went from being a mere nobody at home to being famous here. Since I had just travelled to some of the same cities less than two months ago with our summer students, many people recognized and remembered me. People who worked at the hotels, remembered and asked where all my other friends were, people at the tourist sights remembered and asked what I was doing back so soon, ladies in the market remembered me and actually commented that my language had improved. Every where I went I ran into people who I had just met. In one town someone mentioned seeing me on TV ( I have been on local TV programs three or four times, another story for another day).
On our last day in one town I was walking down the street and passed two men working away, as I walked by, one man said to the other, “oh that girl is from Canada, but lives in the area capital and is studying Uyghur language at the university.” It seemed like everyone not only knew who I was, but they also knew everything about me. At first I thought, “Wow, these people have good memories, or else nothing better to do all day”. But the more I thought about it the more I had to admit I must seem like a strange commodity to them. I am sure not many Canadian come through town who speak their language and walk with a limp. What ever the reason: I am famous ;)
I meet these two woman in the summer and actually went back to visit them in their homes.