My second First Day in Qufu was delightful, and I am once again happy to have arrived at my destination. Here is what we did yesterday:
8:00: Arrive from the night train to a foggy, cool morning at the Qufu train station.
9:00: Driver takes us to our campus. The place is already bustling with students getting ready for class and grandmas playing outside with their toddlers.
9:30: Breakfast and exploring at the North Market. I visit my egg lady and drink some hot soy milk.
10:30: We all take much-needed showers and start rescuing our apartments from last year's disorganization and the summer's dust and rain.
12:00: Our foreign affairs officer, Meiling, invites us to a wonderfully relaxed lunch to catch up and get acquainted with Chip and Mallary.
Top photo: Mallary, Chip, Tarah, me, and Meiling.
Bottom photo: Lunch included a new dish for me: A slimy, spicy, rice-based, clear pancake-noodle thing. It wasn't bad.
1:00: I do laundry, mop floors, and put away stuff.
4:30: We meet with our department to figure out class schedules, textbooks, and other concerns. This was great timing -- last year, we didn't have this meeting until after classes started, which meant that I started teaching my classes before I had ever met anyone in my department or had any clue what they expected of me. This year was more organized, and we also had the pleasure of seeing many of our colleagues and introducing them to the new teachers.
6:00: Supper and exploring in the East Market.
8:00 It gets dark and our eyes get heavy. We stay awake long enough for a short Sunday prayer time, and then I go to bed.
So ended a very nice day. This week is all team-building and lesson prep, and then we start teaching next Monday.