Thursday, 18 June 2009


Our finale to our time in China. It takes brave (or less intelligent) people to leave for a week and then have about 24 hours before they have to totally move from China. But in spite of being at a ridiculously high altitude and having the customary headache our trip to Tibet was amazing. The people were so interesting. We felt as if each face belonged in National Geographic.

Monday, 15 June 2009


On the way to Tibet we stopped in Chengdu and were able to go to the Panda Preserve. We also saw the world's largest Buddha. We had to see the Buddha from the river. We had a great time with great people.

Sunday, 14 June 2009

Huang Shizeng

While we were in China in April the government disabled our ability to read blogs or to post on ours so we didn't add pictures to our blog the last 2 and a half pictures of our time in China. We are attempting to add a few pictures after the fact in order to complete our year there.

Huang Shizeng is a Russian teacher at Tsinghua University. We met one day when Maradel was coming home from teaching and he struck up a conversation with her. Mike came out and joined the conversation. He found out that we were interested in learning Russian and he became our tutor, although it was an opportunity for him to practice his English. We got to be very good friends and he did so much for us. He helped us understand the culture and he also helped us move out by helping us get to the airport. We gave him some of our stuff, like our bicycles that we could't bring home and we were so grateful that he could use them. He was planning to use them for his grandson. He and his wife had us to their house for dinner, and they took us to a wonderful restaurant on campus that we didn't know about. They are one of our favorite memories from China.

Friday, 24 April 2009

The Exterior of the School

Volunteer Work at the Primary School

This past Wednesday was our last day to volunteer at the primary school near our apartment. We were surprised to learn this, but it is because this coming Wednesday the students are presenting a very big May Day program (sports). We have observed the entire school or so it seems lining up every afternoon to practice for this special occasion.
The month of May will be spent working hard drilling, cramming, and studying for the all important tests that the students will take in June.
We have worked with all the sixth grade students this semester. They have been delightful and we have learned much from them. This past month we have primarily listened to and made suggestions to their speeches for the English competition they had last weekend.
When we arrived at the school this week, we were presented with gifts of appreciation and then escorted to the different classrooms where the students posed with us. The assistant principal (we aren't sure of her official title) was so kind to take the pictures and email them to us.
The students have been wonderful. They have so much energy and have been especially kind to us.