This first week of April was a welcome rest from my constant traveling/schooling. While others took the week as an opportunity to travel around (some went to Tibet, Hong Kong, Tokyo etc...) I was about traveled out. So I (along with my friends Alex and Chas) took the week and "kept it local" as they say, recharging my batteries.
I will now fill each day with a short synopsis, giving a peak into the daily ongoings of my Spring Break.
Day 1 - The highlight of my first night on break was taking the time to visit a local bar that is actually owned by two sisters of which we've become friends with. I had never visited the bar before, but it turned out to be a nice, trendy little bar. The way it featured such bright, clean atmosphere, it almost felt more like it should be a coffee shop than a bar. But after a few drinks in me, it was clear that it most certianly was a bar in ever since of the word. Especially after we worked our way through some darts (just like home) and a few rounds of the very popular dice game Bo Bing (no so much like home).
Day 2 - My second day was the previously detailed Xiamen Marathon.
Day 3 - The last of the nice weather for break. If only I'd known the sun was about to disappear for the following week...instead of finding the beach, we treated ourselves to our favorite dumpling house. This place deserves a journal entry all its own, as its become one of my favorite little nooks in Xiamen and is frequented all too often by myself. In fact, I had lunch there again today. For a mere 6 Yuan (about 90 Cents) they will bring out a plate of 20 Dumplings for your eating pleasure. The dumplings come in all sorts of stuffings, the best I've discovered are the Mushroom and Egg Dumplings by far. Its a great little place that has treated me far too well, for far too cheap.
Day 4 - Monday's as usual, are my day's working at Common Talk. Not much went on this week as they had no new assignments. I edited some other work and wrote up an opinion piece on my experience as an English judge for their Speaking Contest. Hopefully that will be published in the near future.
Day 5 - One of our requirements by Prof. Grasso before leaving China is to visit the nearby city of Jie Mae. Its about an hour outside the city and is the home of one of China's greatest contributers to education. I visited his home which is now a museum as well as a park dedicated to his memory. The man was amazing and gave all of his time and energy to promotin and establishing better schooling throughout Southern China. I'm going to copy my Jie Mae write up to this blog probably in my next posting, so stay tuned to read more about the trip.
Day 6 - After our trip to Jie Mae, the weather had clearly taken a turn for the worse. No end was in sight and it was only getting colder and rainier day by day. This was the time to take advantage of my Nintendo Wii and truly just rest. We spent an undocumented amount of time in my room playing Madden NFL football, taking the Bears from Week 1 all the way to the second round of the playoffs...only to be utterly defeated at the hands of the @#$@#% Minneasota Vikings. Good times good times.
Day 8,9 - Gulanyu, the small little island only 10 minutes from my campus is a great get away for anyone looking for some peace and quiet. I'd visited a handful of times, but never actually stayed there. Alex and I made a point to find a good bed and breakfeast and really explore the island. No cars, motorcycles etc...are allowed on the island. Making it one of the most relaxed places you can find...anywhere. Beautiful scenery, beaches, and lots of quiant, old english architecture dominate the island. AKA Piano Island, Gulanyu used to be the home to all the englishmen who once inhabited and worked in Xiamen. Strangely enough, it features the most highly concentrated amount of piano's in the world. Who would think China of all places would hold that claim?
The night was ruled by a trip to KK, the number one dance club in Xiamen. Giant video screens, beautiful girls, rich businessmen, and the hottest music dominate the scene. The last time we tried to get in the club we were actually turned away as our dress code wasn't up to snuff. We didn't realize this was that sort of club. Despite its "high-maintenance" character, I actually spent no money while out. Its an amazing phenomena here in China, but, me being a westerner, I get treated to the equivalent of a blonde bombshell in any given bar in America. All my drinks are bought by Chinese eager to hang out with westerners and everyone's willing to have a conversation with you. Its a very new and strange phenomena to me, as I've never had DD breasts.