There is nothing noble in being superior to your fellow man; true nobility is being superior to your former self. -- Ernest Hemingway

星期五, 7月 20, 2012

God treats us nicely

NOTE: It's amazing that I can write something embarrassing in English that I dare not in Chinese. What I'm going to write maybe it's a great leap but a small step actually for others. In order not to get much attention, perhaps I can steer avert troubles by writing in English.

Things had happened 2 years ago, after chemotherapy I decided to go further studies of translation and interpretation. I totally forgot the requirement while doing a project in Central Training Center (CTC) in Taichung as a contract interpreter. Thus I had no time to prepare for TOEFL and IELTS. Well then actually that's not a excuse, for it's well written in the enrollment manual as a require. TOEIC 950, TOEFL ITP 600 or IELTS 7. For those candidates who major in interpretation, at least both 7 in Listening and Speaking.

I took twice of it, for Listening I have no problems. However as for speaking part, somehow I just couldn't get it done. And due to the time constraint, I couldn't take another TOEFL. So this is how it ended with misery. Just like an jet pilot fell behind the enemy line waving to the rescue helicopter and screaming while it just hovered and turned back. "Hey! I'm here! Hey, fxxx I'm here! I made it!" cried in great despair. I was qualified to get enrollment but failed to meet the requirement for entrance. That's pathetic.

I wasn't doing well in the test in the second year, and because the Chinese subject was lifted in the test, I didn't get any advantage. I have some problems with my English writing, so I failed again. No 7 in the waiting slot.

I couldn't recall how many times I took TOEIC, TOEFL and IELTS after that. Meanwhile I still have to do some part time to support myself and my family. I have translated a textbook about animation for a professor, without a name written on it. Some dialogues (approximately 1,0000 words) of a famous first person shooting game. I cannot give too many details about it due to the none-disclosure agreement (NDA). Thanks God I was managed to get the contract in CTC again, which allowed me another chance for preparing NCUE interpretation school.

So by the end of last year, which is exactly the time I've finished my CTC project, I decided to take my final NCUE challenge, and Immigration Agency Test, which requires English skills too.

It was very dull and tiring to be a examinee. You don't know whether your hardship will pay back or not eventually. You get nothing if you fail, and you have to make up some lame excuse for it on resume. When other people have a  life, working, holidaying, dating, having a good time and show those intriguing luscious pictures, the only thing you expect is to get away with it as much as you can for it is hard to swallow that you're still struggling in a maze that could be possible no way out. My mom is a typical example, who is contract worker that has been serving for local government since I was born, and she just couldn't give up the idea to be an authenticated government employee. For like 20 years, she has kept on preparing for it. I've witnessed that how crazy it is to prepare for an exam. That's insane, you could have contributed a lot if were not preparing for a small role government employee! I said to mom and tried to convince her that the idea had drove her crazy, but somehow she just like haunted person that refused to swallow her pride.

Well, I don't want to be like her, so this year is a lot of different to me.

I bought as many TOEFL, TOEIC exam textbook as I could, I searched every possible grammar practice sites. I asked tons of dumb questions to native speakers at cram school. In sum, I got what it takes to achieve it. I have decided that this year would be my point of no return. I know something in your life, such as love affairs, promotion, friendship, is either you have it or you don't. Exams are no exception. Now or never, I've decided to take the final chance. To the worst degree, I can still be an English teacher in Buxiban, although the pay is not what I expected.

Well great it works! Finally in the second last TOEFL, I met the requirement! :)

I was very embarrassed at cram school. The one I attend is a family class, which has no limitation of student's language ability. Many are surprised about my English speaking skill, but I know that's not good enough for the one I really want to go to. The feeling I have in the trying moment is beyond description. As an old proverb goes: "If life is a grind, use it to sharpen your wit." I believe everything happens for a reason, a blessing in disguise. And if God treats us so nicely, we really should grow a thicker skin. (Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you. - Matthew 7:7) or "(you) mustn't be afraid to dream much bigger, darling! - Inception"