Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Mid-Autumn Festival

The Mid-Autumn Festival is a big holiday period in China. Today is the fall equinox. All evening I've been hearing firecrackers in the distance, and apparently people have moon-viewing parties on this night while munching a special treat called Mooncakes.

In the case of our school, it means some very odd and seemingly random schedule changes for two and a half weeks or so. For example, I will be teaching last Saturday's classes tomorrow, and next Sunday's classes on Friday. Next week on Monday through Thursday, I will teach my evening kindergarten classes but not the regular weekend classes.

This weekend they have announced that there will be a school trip to Qingdao, which will consist of rigorously planned group sightseeing and staying overnight in a hotel.

The following week I will have some promos to teach and then, if all goes well (or if I make travel plans fast enough), five whole days off in a row. This is my big chance to see the terracotta warriors in Xi'an, so I'm keeping my fingers crossed.

On October 16 regular classes will resume, and I will have two new weekend classes added, bringing my course load up to 22 hours per week: 6 weekday hours, 9 on Saturday and 7 on Sunday, NOT including the never-ending promos. It's not a lot of hours... but the way they are distributed is guaranteed to exhaust even the young and healthy!

I call the kitten "monster" and he is growing fast. I'll be sorry to leave him overnight, but he will be fine, if a bit lonesome, as I'll only be gone for 36 hours. (In order to go to Xi'an I'll have to make other arrangements.) He sleeps on my bed and sometimes on me, but doesn't snuggle, and only very occasionally does he let me pet him without taking it as a sign to attack my hand (play mode). He wants to play pretty much all of the time he is awake, I'm sorry he doesn't have any siblings to play with. Paperwads are keeping him very busy and he is getting plenty of exercise.

He looks to be the same color breed as my last cat, Dustbunny. The older he gets, the more he looks like her. I've never seen any other cat that had this white underfur with chocolate tips, either in life or in breed books.

My health continues to go up and down, finally someone is working on getting me an appointment with a Chinese medicine specialist. If there are some weird herbs that will strengthen my respiratory and immune systems I'm all for trying them.

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