Last night I turned the alarm clock off because I'm done -- last day of school was Friday. Then I woke up at 5:00 in the morning and couldn't go back to sleep! Yes, I'm glad that exams are over and the school semester has ended, but I wish I had brought more energy to the last classes with my students. They of course are excited about going home and probably didn't even notice that their usually daffy teacher was more subdued than usual. I'll miss the students during winter break. The mass exodus from campus has begun, as thousands of students head out. Some of my students tell me they are taking factory jobs near Shanghai; I'll be sure to ask them about that experience when they return.
Ross and I will be back in Canada in just a few days. We'll visit with friends and family, then return to China to start my second year as an ESL teacher. Has it been a year already? Well, it's almost eleven months since I flew here, so yes, it has. The trees on campus are all bare, just as they were when I first arrived.
This blog will probably be pretty quiet while we're in Canada -- in a week or so I'll put up a post about our trip to the Ice Festival in Harbin -- but please check back in March for a new semester of Laowai at Large. Thanks for the appreciative comments about the blog, everyone.