The idea behind these “progress reports” is to give a little insight into the things that don’t make a longer post, and to keep interested parties in the loop about some of the small things. Also to assure everyone that I am still alive and very much kicking. Short and sweet. (Picture quality will vary a lot from now on as I only have a cheapy Chinese phone. )

Exams: Had two this morning. Overslept the start of the listening exam and cycled through the first bout of soggy snow to make it 15 minutes late. Second one was speaking exam, bane of the language student’s life. Survived the steely glare of the speaking tutor while I talked about my impressions of China. My impression in that moment was that she was looking forward to the end of the exam as much as I was.

Post-exam sushi feat Rose, fellow screecher of Adele's
Post-exam sushi feat Rose, fellow screecher of Adele’s “Hello” and general banter-buddy from the US

Chinese Friends: Probably total 4 now. Someone’s doing alright.

Korean: Learned enough to impress.

My English Accent: Apparently it’s quite hard to understand. A friend said she can’t actually make out what I’m saying when I’m talking to other Brits. And they said English was an international language.

Snow: We had some. It was wet. It wasn’t fun. Getting a wet bum from a cycle ride is not ideal before an exam.  Need to get me one of these ungainly but ingenious Chinese inventions ( see Korea’s Next Top model below ). Temperature has dropped. Was about to cut open a Tauntaun with a lightsabre and climb inside ( obscure Star Wars reference, for the uninitiated ) but then the heating came on. My Tauntaun survived.

Li Zhenjing (Jin):
Li Zhenjing (Jin): My kungfu chum, calligraphy teacher, and exam day alarm clock.

Dimsum Tum: Chinese equivalent of India’s “Dehli Belly”. Have done a good job of dodging the runs so far, but getting a bit fed up with Chinese food from the canteen. Gotta get off campus for a Western style burger sometimes.

Photocreds: Jin
Western relief. Photocreds: Jin

German: Much easier to speak than Chinese. When I meet Germans, it’s no effort to launch into full Germanic flow. Returning to Chinese is difficult, frustrating, and somewhat disheartening.

Blog Fame: I hear that teachers from Redcliffe have read about my exploits, namely Mr Shaw and Mr Wheeler. Also my friend Eve’s grandma has taken to reading it. Hi Pat =D

English Tea: Had a cup in a local cafe, first one in over two months. Bliss.

Marmite: Nearly out. Send help.

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