Sunday, May 30, 2010


It's nice to be an affluent American (I know I'm affluent because I had to pay taxes this year when President Obama was giving tax breaks to middle and lower income Americans) and have a lot of stuff, but that stuff can really get in the way when you need it to fit in a small bedroom. We started our packing process this Memorial Day weekend and got the china cabinet packed (Joe likes that irony). Also, we ordered both our three 62" rolling duffel bags (red for good luck) and vacuum storage bags, and we'll see how well that works.

In my reading, I finished "Shanghai Girls," which I recommend if you like novels about Chinese women who survive the 1937 Japanese invasion and then fight against discrimination when they emigrate to Los Angeles. I loved it, especially the author's (Lisa See) use of Chinese vocabulary in various dialects. No, can't remember particular examples of the vocabulary; I'm still not really working on learning my Mandarin. I have started "Life and Death in Shanghai" by Nien Cheng, an autobiography of Ms. Cheng's experiences in a Chinese labor camp after the Communist takeover. So far my most probing question is how she was able to get iced tea in 1966, but I haven't read very far.

As the school year ends (two more days with children remain), I have been collecting my instruments, taking inventory and cleaning out my rooms. As that process completes, I turn in my keys to my schools, something I have never done in the past. I tried turning in the first set of keys this week, and ended up weeping all over the office, much to my surprise. Yes, I liked the school and my colleagues very much, but just didn't expect the simple act of turning in keys to be so emotional. This doesn't bode well for my upcoming farewell parties!

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