SPRING FESTIVAL: Day 139, Wednesday January 15 2014

Out with the old and in with the new. Damian’s off to Hainan, (and) most of us are not sad to see his back. In his place is Edric Farce the second. Edric is a bright eyed man of 26 years with lots of stories to tell. He’s got a bachelor’s in writing and a background in acting. First impressions of Edric are positive. Positive enough to make me put my guard up. He’s the kind of guy who makes promises easily and meshes in with everyone. A social butterfly full of energy and interesting stories. Only time will tell if he makes good of his offers or if he’s the kind that’s quick to please and eager to make a first impression, but filled only with dark empty spaces and forgotten promises beneath the surface.

He’s a New Yorker who’s bounced around from one profession to the other, pausing in LA for a brief stunt in the movie business only to leave when the insignificance of his work began to overwhelm him. He’s a wrier and a scholar at heart, and a traveler of the world. He had writing in common with me, Australia in common with Nate, and an affinity to discuss American politics in common with Katrina.

Nate had a four hour class today. It’s spring festival now so the kids are on holiday from school, but instead of letting them have some time off to be kids their parents have doubled their after school activities.

I watched Katrina’s Honey Dew class for a bit because I had the time. I may be taking it over from her in the spring which is really exciting because I’ve heard nothing but good things about it. Katrina has no academic teaching background, but has a natural affinity with the kids and brings an energy level to the table that I can’t even fathom. Ok, a little bit of a lesson in “how to balance a class” might make things run more smoothly for her, but it’s definitely fun to see a self taught teacher working so well. I’m pretty sure the school considers her the top teacher at our centre.

We got our pay today! I always feel a little guilty when I know that the Chinese Teachers who work along side us get paid only a third of what we do, and do twice as much work for it. Damian’s passing murmur through his usual haze of snarky comments and pig headed remarks, of “you know what’s kind of sad? How many families we could feed with one of our pay checks.” is one that’s stuck with me.

I had been planning to dance on the streets tonight but the pollution kept me in. I’ve been told that it is less healthy to exercise in China because of the air pollution then it is to lead a sedentary life style.

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