Our new student arrived. He's a wonderfully fun and happy fifth grade boy, born in Tanzania so he looks African but raised in Shanghai so he speaks Mandarin fluently!! We are all enjoying him and his excitement for things like swimming during study hall, playing soccer and sleeping on the top bunk. He has excellent manners, likes to eat and is in the ESL program with a tutor.
The weather is incredibly HOT!! As I write this at 10:51 pm, it is still +30C. It doesn't cool off at nights so the days continue to get hotter and hotter and hotter. Our dorm lounge and kitchen, which aren't air conditioned, are like ovens in the middle of the day. It will be like this for another couple of months. The good thing is that everybody is wet with sweat so no one looks out of place in a sweat soaked shirt!
We celebrated Valentine's Day by giving our dorm family chocolates and buying carnations to put on the table tonight for supper. Tim bought me a book and I bought him a chocolate covered cheesecake. A lot of other neat surprises happened to students and friends all day long - it was fun to watch!
This coming Sunday (Feb 18) is Chinese New Year and already we can tell from the traffic that this will be a big celebration. The hotel next door is shooting off fireworks and cannons every evening so far. Our students have Monday and Tuesday off but we can't really go anywhere due to the traffic congestion.
We are throwing a Valentine's banquet for the dorm students on Saturday night. Tim is on the food committee and somehow they have secured strawberries, fresh strawberries, for dessert. This is amazing!! I'm in charge of the program and we've got some fun things planned to do at the tables and other games on stage with some staff members. Should be a fun time for all. Annie finally found something to wear to this banquet - its the only banquet all year for middle schoolers so they take the opportunity to dress up fancy.
That's all for now. Love and blessings to all our friends and family half a world away on this Valentine's Day!