12.01.2012 8 °C
The last couple of weeks of working at the school were probably some of the most stressful as all of a sudden there were lots of assessments and work to be graded. Even up until yesterday my brain was still ticking and my pen writing hard. Then all of a sudden it was over. I breathed a huge sigh and suddenly realized I had done it. Five months as a high school teacher, actually something I’m pretty sure I swore I’d never do! My class of boys in all their sleeping glory actually worked so hard in the last few weeks and ended up becoming some of my favourite people. When it came to my last lesson (and I told them for the sixth time that I would not be giving them my phone number or allowing them to come to England and stay on my floor) they all took photos with me and my other class gave me a huge sad wave as I walked out of their classroom for the last time. It was strange but I feel I will miss them more once I have left. Kat and I then went to celebrate with wine and beer and street food on sticks.
Today was a long morning of packing and cleaning and yet again I had to try and figure out a way to try and fit my life into a backpack whilst remaining calm when realizing that what I wanted to wear was actually right at the bottom. I somehow managed to fit everything in and do up the zip however, but I did sadly have to say goodbye to homemade lion ears, a bag and even a couple of dresses. Sad times.
In true Chinese style, we were informed at 1pm that in four hours time there will be a ‘surprise’ leaving dinner for us. Good job we were told just then otherwise we would have probably already made our way to the bar… I think I may compare this leaving dinner with our awkward arrival dinner all that time ago in August and score myself on chopstick using ability, fish with small bones eating and sitting around a round, moving table etiquette.
I will be leaving for Shanghai and some traveling adventures tomorrow. Although working at the school has had its moments, overall it has been an amazing experience. I have met some friends who I hope to keep in touch with for many years to come and I will forever hold lovely memories of working with and teaching all the students. It will be strange to return to England and not have this life anymore and I hope that one day I can return to Beilun and visit some old haunts.