Today is the Dragon Boat Festival in China. Whoo! For those who don't know, there is a legend that the poet/scholar Qu Yuan drowned himself in a river after the Qin took over the Chu capital during the Warring States period (or because he was exiled...there are a few different versions of the story). The people liked and respected Qu Yuan so they threw rice into the river so that the fish would eat the rice and not his body, and road boats to scare the fish and look for his body (which is now dragon boat racing).
We get today and Friday off for the holiday. I was thinking of going somewhere to enjoy the holiday, but then the school took my passport to renew my work visa so I can't. Bah. Probably for the best. SO MANY people travel during the holidays here and I hate crowds.
Doesn't mean I can't celebrate by myself! The school gave all the teachers some nice Dragon Boat Festival treats!
On the left is a mixed package of zongzi and the left (if you can't read the package) is cooked salted duck eggs. Zongzi is sticky rice usually with some sort of filling (most often red bean) and it's wrapped with bamboo leaves. I decided to steam some zongzi for my lunch today.
While I was waiting I figured I would try some of the eggs.
They are vaccuum wrapped individually and there are a bunch of them.
Since they are already cooked I decided to just open one like a hard boil egg and eat it. It kinda split open as soon as I tried that.
Doesn't look too appetizing, huh? It was ok, but VERY salty. June said I should have them with rice congee so I should go shopping and GET some rice congee. Or maybe I can just have them with plain rice...
Once I was done with that, my zongzi were done steaming. I chose the ones with meat filling for lunch. They were pretty good. Maybe I'll have the ones with red bean for dessert tonight.
I also cleaned my apartment. It's simply sparkling now.
Isabelle and Zeno are coming over tonight and I am cooking mexican (Zeno's request).
Also, Becky and Stephanie (two other foreign teachers at PingHe) are working on making costumes for a few plays they are doing with their kids and they asked me for my help. I sewed up two tunics, sewed some trim to two capes, taught them how to make simple hats, made four pouches and am now knitting some costume chainmail. (Did you know that the chainmail used in Monty Python and the Holy Grail was knitted wool painted silver?)
And I'm sorry that my posting has gone down in frequency but it's a lot harder now to post.
Isabelle and Lucy pointed out that I only have three weekends left in Shanghai before I go home for the summer. Eek! This weekend is still up in the air (although I have to work on Sunday), next weekend is Lucy's birthday celebration, and the weekend after that is Shanghai Pride. When am I going to pack...
Just one last thing for this post, the relationship slang class went VERY differently for different classes. With the class I always have the most trouble with they didn't pay attention and when I asked if they had any slang questions they sat in stony silence. A class that is usually good was not much better. The two classes that often pay the most attention and seem most comfortable with me as a teacher played close attention and had tones of other questions (like what a hickey was called in English and different words you can use to talk about attractive guys). Like I said to my students, it may be embarassing and weird to talk about this stuff with a teacher, but they want to go to college in America. I would rather them be a bit embarassed with me if it means that they will know what the heck their classmates are talking about once they get to the US.
That's all for now. Time to start getting ready for dinner.