After 206 days away for the United States, we only have 99 days left in China (which doesn’t seem very long at all anymore). I suspect we will spend most our remaining time experiencing Guangzhou. We want to give the kids as much time as possible in Chinese Kindergarten since there is no more valuable experience for them. I also would like to explore GZ a bit more before we depart—the pearl market, the musical instrument market, new restaurants, etc. We’ve also begun shopping for stuff to bring back to the USA. And before long we’ll be giving away to our Chinese friends many of the possessions that we’ve accumulated.
So far, this is an enjoyable semester. My class is quite good, although the wide range of English-speaking ability and experience in coursework on American law/politics will make it more challenging (in a good way). And I to start having evenings of “English Free Talk” with my law school colleagues which at times is fun, silent, difficult, loud, awkward, and bizarre. We’ve also befriended a German family with a young daughter that will be staying in our apartment complex for the rest of the month. And the kids are loving school, which is great because I’m already able to spend much more time interacting with my law school colleagues.
Things I’ll miss from China: eating family-style at restaurants; dim sum; nai huang bao (steamed sweet milk custard yellow bun); the kids’ school; Chinese food especially eggplant and tofu dishes; the subway; not having to have a car (I have a profound dislike of cars and driving.); living on a university campus; the campus canteen and bakery; our friends; being close to travel in Southeast Asia; my Chinese students.
Upon return to VT, I look forward to: the gym; indoor basketball; organic food; softball; eating raw produce; hiking Kent’s Ledge; our kitchen and dishwasher; walking in downtown Montpelier, Sabin’s Pasture, and Hubbard Park; looking at the trees, mountains, and nature in general; clean air; our deck; my sofa; drinkable tap water; eating the veggie burger at J. Morgan’s; eating at Kismet and the Skinny Pancake; the Montpelier Farmers’ Market; seeing friends at the Three Penny Taproom; returning to the Vermont Law School; good cheese and fresh baked crusty bread; seeing our neighbors; sleeping in my large and comfortable bed.