Saturday, September 22, 2007

Mid-Autumn Festival BBQ

The Mid-Autumn Festival is celebrated with mooncakes and barbeques. Tonight, some of Scott's students who didn't get to go home for the break invited us to a cookout in the school courtyard. Initially, I didn't feel like going but the party turned out to be a really good time. There are about 35 graduating seniors in the class, all business English majors. They bought pork, chicken, sausage, hot dogs, fish, beer and soda at the supermarket and set up several little brick grills. Everybody skewered a few pieces of meat and had a good time roasting all the food together. After a little while, I ran up to my apartment to grab the speakers I bought for class and my MP3 player so we could have some music.

Everybody was really friendly, full of questions about life in the United States, and eager to practice their English. I talked with a boy named Shine for a while. It turns out that Shine loves country music, but only knows one country song... so tomorrow he's coming over and I'll help him download some good old Brooks and Dunn, Alan Jackson, and Keith Urban.

Everybody harassed each other about singing and dancing- "Hey, I hear you're a really good dancer, Apple! Why don't you show us?" "Oh, Shine, can you stand up at the top of the steps and show us your dance moves?" The students sang a bunch of songs for Scott and I- mostly in a group, but a few soloists did volunteer to perform English songs while everyone else clapped along.

Later in the night, the students clumped in two groups around Scott and I, asking questions about everything: business in America (I told them about my successful brother), our families (one girl also has a twin), famous sites in America, Florida, my pets at home, food in America, what my ideal job is, college life, etc. It was really interesting to hear their perspectives and views, especially since they are all close to my age and will be heading out to look for jobs in December.

The food was delicious and the company and music were excellent. China, you have redeemed yourself.

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