A moment of reflection

Wow! It has certainly taken us a while to get used the pace of our new lives in China. After a whirlwind first week of adventures including apartment hunting, medical exams, and moving (Grant is still alive BTW:) we officially started school at CISQD (Confucius International School Qingdao).

While inservice can always be a bit of information overload, being a foreign teacher seems to come with it’s own unique set of challenges. Not only are there new procedures and rules, but we have found ourselves at a proper English boarding school where house points are awarded for good marks and being helpful, and detentions are earned for students caught speaking Chinese. It’s all an attempt to help prepare them for lives abroad at various prestigious universities. Again, lots to take in and learn..but we came prepared! Stepping up our game is why we chose CISQD in first place.

We can’t seem yet to put this new experience into words. Our lives now seem to move even fast then before. After a few weeks on the job we’ve realized that the work week is for work; it’s fast paced and professional. As soon as you arrive at school in the morning you hit the ground running until you’re on the bus headed home in the evening. And you work so hard on the weekdays that you really want to capitalize on the weekends by hitting the beach, going out to eat, exploring new areas, etc.

So that’s what we’ve been doing! When we’re not working, we are out exploring the city and surrounding areas, checking out the local parks, hanging out with our friends, or eating. There is so much great food here!

More to come later!

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Our first experience ordering Chinese street meat!
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When you Google “Qingdao” this is the iconic sculpture you’ll most likely come across first.
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One of the coolest koi ponds we’ve seen…so far;)
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There is some amazing architecture here, especially where there are parks or temples.
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This park is called “Little Fish Hill”
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When you order “1” thinking you’re ordering a single steam bun…
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One of the many lotus ponds.

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A view from Signal Hill
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Parks in China are interesting. While you can find some moments of tranquility, you only have to walk for 2 more minutes before you come across people exercising in large groups, or having a saxophone lesson with a dozen people all playing different songs, or a group putting on a play or little concert. You really don’t know what you’ll find!
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Hot beaches
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Grant with his department at the Confucian Opening Ceremony at our school.
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Ok…honest moment…the beer here isn’t very good (comparatively speaking) BUT some of it does have cute little characters on the cans. So…yeah…
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Everywhere you look there are interesting sculptures and architecture.
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You can find western food! If you know where to look 😉 (Full disclosure: it’s not that hard)
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After the first full week with students the whole school faculty were treated to a catered event on the roof of this hotel. I got to hang out with my favorite 🙂

 

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We were both welcomed very generously by the faculty and our new colleagues…Grant even got cake from his department for his birthday!

4 thoughts on “A moment of reflection

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