JD turns five today. He's had a large pile of presies taunting and tempting him since last weekend! We've allowed him to open one gift each day this week as long as there was no crying on arrival at school that morning - a relapse he's been struggling with for a couple of weeks. Happy Birthday, Son!
These trucks have been seen doing their thing around the streets of Kunming recently. Nobody is quite sure what their function is, though. Some say it is to humidify the dry air, others to remove pollution or even to spray pesticide on trees. Whatever the reason, it leaves unwary pedestrians soaking and makes roads really slippery for bikes and e-bikes. I just wish they would spend the money on filling in pot-holes instead.
Jiajia's birthday celebrations this year were largely hijacked by JD, who wanted to wear the crown, open the cards and presents, blow out the candles etc.
Jiajia has been gradually getting used to celebrating birthdays. She never really had her birthday acknowledged as a child. She recalls once when her Mum went out to buy her a birthday cake. But, after inviting her school friends round to share it, her Mum returned and said it was too expensive and she should just send her friends home. Ma seems to be trying to make up for it, to some extent, these days. She bought the cake this year and also gave Jiajia some birthday money - more than all previous birthday presents combined! Thankfully my wife is a much, much better Mum.
I spent this weekend in Suzhou, in the East of China, teaching five volunteers (from four different countries) on what is likely to be the last Lattitude in-country training course. It involved me taking a 6am taxi to Kunming airport for a three hour flight to Shanghai and a 3 hour bus trip to the College. The course had originally been an 8-day affair, later cut to 7 days but now crammed into a weekend. As such, a lot of important elements have had to be jettisoned such as language lessons, outings and teaching practice. It was rushed, to say the least.
My hotel was very pleasant [see above] and we enjoyed some good food. But all too soon, I was on my way home - taxi to the railway station, bullet train to the airport and ....seven hour delay on the plane! I arrived back home in Kunming just two hours before my first University class of the week, after 36 hours without sleep. Not good.
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