Friday, September 11, 2009

Yesterday was National Teachers Day here in China. The school was all decorated with balloons and ribbons, and there was a big assembly. We got to go on stage and get flower leis from the kids, and one girl even brought little paper cranes for all the teachers. It was so fun. Then last night we were invited to a dinner at a nice restaurant here in Xiaolan. We were was excited to go, a little nervous about the food and not really knowing Chinese etiquette, but mostly excited. Then they tell us that, “Oh by the way we would like the ILP teachers to perform an American dance at the dinner.” What?? So our free time this week has been spent learning “Thriller.” (There were hints that they wanted Michael Jackson). I was way nervous, especially considering the fact that I cannot dance and I didn’t already know parts of the dance like the other girls. I did manage to learn the dance though, so then I just had to be nervous about getting on stage and drawing a total blank on the moves. When we got there, we were quite surprised by the amount of people in attendance. There were over 250 people there made up of teachers from other schools and Government Officials, ya know nothing to really be nervous about. We were told that we were the 4th group to perform. Although we did not know beforehand that the other performances would be people talking or singing a nice calm song, then all the sudden we bust out “Thriller.” I wonder what these people think of us crazy Americans. It was really fun though, and we did great for the beginning and the end, with only a few minor mistakes in the middle. I wish I could post the movie for you to see, but alas, China has blocked all means to make that possible. I will show anyone who wants to see in December when I get home.
Now on to the dining for the evening. The food was sooooo good. They just brought dishes full of different foods out and put them on this plate thing in the middle of the table. Then you just roll the plate thing around and everyone takes what they want. We struggled a little bit with the chop sticks. We are fine eating with them, but it is hard to serve yourself with them. There were many dishes, and even though our coordinator Annie was there, we still did not always know what we were eating. Some of the ones we did know were: fish and water chestnuts, large shrimp, fried tofu and cabbage, cantaloupe with peppers and cashews, chicken, chicken and shrimp soup, some sort of bread cake, and watermelon (no rice in sight). Oddly enough our favorites were fried sweet and sour fish and pigeon. The Chinese like to do cheers a lot, and you don’t just cheer the people around your table, you get up and cheer everyone. It is pretty funny because everyone goes at different times, so you keep having to get up to cheer people while you are trying to eat. We had a great time trying the different foods, and it was a way fun night. We love National Teachers Day!!!


Jenette said...

So, what does pigeon taste like? I have a ton in my backyard, maybe I should start using them for food!

Brian and Kelsey said...

You are very brave... I struggle eating new foods maybe if I didn't know what it was though it would help. I miss you! Come home so we can plan a wedding :-)