To say that yesterday was a break from the tedium is an understatement of epic proportions. First off, we visited the mysterious Manila International School. Upon walking in the gate, we thought we had found an abandoned amusement park; In point of fact, it was just the school mini-golf course. Set up by Filipinos and entirely English-speaking, the Manila had to be rebuilt when a tidal wave swept away most of the buildings (luckily, there was no school that day). It seemed okay. Next stop: The ritzy Xiamen International School, with one laptop per student, leather-upholstered couches in the hallways, and a strange resemblance to every expensive private school in the US. Unfortunately, it’s about an hour away, direct trip. Not optimal.
Upon returning to the campus, my dad and I received a shock. The main gate was thronged with people, with dozens more stepping off of tour buses every minute. THe gate itself was guarded by several guards who were rigorously checking IDs. Now, we live on campus, and we were never given IDs. Luckily, we swayed the guards with the help of a bilingual bystander and a Wisconsin driver’s license.
But it doesn’t end there. When we returned to the apartment, we were informed that there had been a gas leak, and Jonah and Frankie had therefore been taken to my Mom’s class. The cleaners seem to have fixed it, but we’re not entirely sure.
On the upside, I got a chess set, a go set, and a xianqi set, so I’ll be set with entertainment before I start at Manila.
[posted by Ivan]