|The view of our school from my room, complete with mini|
Eiffel Tower on top of the 'Relax Hotel'
The best thing about our rooms…finding out we had the luxury of a western toilet! The worst thing….our 10pm curfew. We live on the school campus so unfortunately no late nights if we want to come back to our rooms. However if you work on the guanxi (relationship) with the security guards, apparently you can be a dirty stop out now and again! So they will be getting a nice Christmas present from me! Or, as carried out a number of times by fellow ELAs, there is always the option of jumping the school fence (not the ones with barbed wire however!). Luckily a couple of our friends do not have curfews so they don’t mind us crashing there if we want to stay out at the weekends. But in all honesty I think we are going to have a slightly different way of life here. Things start and end a lot earlier and after teaching my juniors a few times in one day I am ready for bed anyway!
|My room for the next year|
On our arrival in Tinajin we were taken for lunch by Shawn and Alex. The city is known for its sweet tooth and so I tried a lovely cake/pastry for the first time. But little did I know that I was to become slightly addicted...the bakery along the road now gets a lot of business from us and, being only 20p a cake, I just have no reason to resist…well except the calories! I may be a little bit of a fatty on my return to the UK! They are too good to describe but if I was to give it a go I would have to say that they are like a warm pastry cup, filled with a kind of custardy goodness….
Our school is located right in the centre of town, which means right in the middle of all the shops, which means I have to work very hard to control my slight shopping habit. Although I have only hit H&M once since our arrival so I am very proud of myself. There are four Starbucks within 500m of our dorms, a costa coffee, a Zara, umpteen McDonalds and a Haagen-Dazs restaurant. Oh and how could I forget, a long lost favourite from the British high street…C&A. So we basically live right in the middle of Tianjin’s Oxford Street. I love it!
|China's favourite...Pizza Hut and H&M|