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China Diaries: Thursday and all is Well

October 27, 2016


The relentless humidity is my biggest enemy. It is inescapable.

Enough about my sweaty underarms, let me inform you about life in a Chinese institute.

Students live a strange version of regimentation that only ever exists in some kind of prolonged high school environment. Classes start at 8:30, lunch at 11:30 till 1:30, and finally they end the day at 4:35pm.  Every hour or so a school bell rings and they get a short rest at their desk. Sometimes the break is 5 minutes and at other times it is 10 minutes.  Do I dare question the madness of having so many breaks that give no real rest at all?  You betcha.  I negotiated with the institute to lessen the number of nap time breaks and replace then two decent breaks. One in the morning and the other in the afternoon. Amazingly the students loved this change and can now go through a day without passing out.

I am being reminded by more experienced travelers that pride is very important and losing face is the worst thing that can happen to a person.

Thus I starting to learn the fine art of making constructive criticism look like a status symbol for the receiver.

How long I can do this is anyone’s guess.

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