The semester is over here, and has been for a week. It's hard to believe I've already been here 4.5 months. The last week of class was Christmas week, and I had finals all that week. This week I've been relaxing and it's been nice. I've now got 7 weeks of paid vacation until next semester begins on February 26th
. I've got quite a bit planned in there:
- I'll be in Haerbin (which is in NE China near Russia) the next couple of days. I'm going there with Josh, Chad & Krystal, 3 of the other ELT Edge teachers at my school. We're taking the night train tonight, and then we're planning to take the night train on the 11th back to here. Haerbin is famous for its ice lantern festival, when they build buildings out of ice that you can walk through. You can see pictures of the festival here and here.
- I'll be back here at the school for a couple of days after that.
- On January 15th, I'll be taking a train down to Guangzhou in southern China. From January 15th - February 1st, I'll be traveling around the southern part of China with some ELT Edge teachers and students from Northeast University at Qinhuangdao. I don't know what all we're going to do, which is fine by me. It's been frustrating planning things for when my parents come, so it's nice to be able to tag along and not have to do any of the planning for this part of the trip.
- On February 1st, I'll be flying from Guangzhou to Tokyo to visit my cousin Tim for a week. He is part of a PHd program in Sendai, Japan this year, so I figured I should visit him while we're both in this part of the world.
- On February 8th, I'll be flying from Tokyo to Shanghai. My parents are flying into Shanghai on that same date. We'll be traveling from Shanghai back to the school here in Qinhuangdao for the next couple of weeks, making it back here in time for the start of next semester on February 26th. We'll also have a student traveling with us to help us get around. Besides Shanghai, we're also planning to visit Suzhou, Hangzhou, Huang Shan, Kaifeng, Xi'an and Beijing. My parents will also be here for the first several days of next semester, so they'll get to see what life at the school is like.
During these next 7 weeks, I'm going to have sporadic Internet
access, so I probably won't be posting much on here, if at all. I'll be sure to check my email when I can, though, so please feel free to email me.