|From Chinese New Year Day 3|
Jamie and I returned back from our Beijing trip wiped out. Griffey was taken care of by our AYI, and some other house guests. He was excited to see us, but promptly went outside and found some Chinese street food and ate a few whole chicken on a stick (bones included). He was up most of the night with a tummy ache, which meant I was up too. As a friend said to me, "the joys of parenthood."
Having arrived from our trip to Beijing, we are gearing up for another trip this summer throughout China. We aren't exactly sure of the itinerary, but the trip will include my parents as well as my niece. We plan to go to Hong Kong, Shenzhen, Beijing, Xi'an (to see the terracotta warriors), Guilin (beautiful scenery and karst landscape), and perhaps either Chengdu (to see the pandas) or a Yangtze river cruise. All this we'll try and fit into about 14 - 16 days. Obviously more to come later on this wonderful trip. I'm excited because my parents will get to come and my niece will see things that will simply blow her little 12 year old mind. She will actually turn 13 while she is in China. Talk about a birthday to remember!
We have settled back into a decent routine here at school. We have both filed for and received extensions on our dissertations and will be continuing to write those. I actually have until May 27 to finish Chapters 1 - 3. This is certainly doable if I will just sit down and start writing, a task that has become quite difficult for some reason. My motivation right now is simply non-existent, but perhaps I can trudge through it.
We have started our sessions of the Rosetta Stone program for Mandarin Chinese. We hope this will enable us to at least get by with some basic Chinese in the city and throughout China. Once again, you have to force yourself to do it and we've already missed 2 days. We'll try and be more disciplined. It is nice learning new phrases and using them with the locals here. They certainly appreciate it.
All the news for now. We are both already looking forward to our next break at the end of April where Jamie and I will go to Bali, Indonesia to the beach. We are excited, but it is simply not close enough. We do get a mini break in March where we might make a short trip in China.
Bye for now... As my old Latin teacher use to say... "H.A.N.D."