As I progress towards the end of the semester, and the end of my time here, I have been having meals with various friends and ex-students. There are no doubt more to come. First, there was last week, during the four-day holiday from 1-4 May. I met with a student who I taught in my first year here, who was then a Senior 1 student and is now in their first year of university. It was nice to catch up with her. She always had very good English and was always a nice student. Since I left RDFZ, I have not really spoken to her or seen her, so it was nice to catch up.
We went to a restaurant which served rice – which is not uncommon here, obviously – though I think it specialised in this. I had a mushroom something or other (I do not know what it was called). I was a non-meat option however, so that was good.
Then, on Saturday evening I went and met another former student. I only taught her twice, and that was when I was covering, but she used to come into the foreign teachers’ office a lot. Like the other student who I met earlier in the week, this one also has very good English, though she is still at high school. When I first arrived at RDFZ, she was in Junior 1. She is now in Senior 1. We went to a noodle place, near her home. I had tomato and egg noodles – something of a staple here (tomato and egg is a very common, and simple, Chinese dish). The other stuff included some vegetables, which were a little spicy, and some other stuff which the student did not know what they were called in English, but which looked a little like prawn crackers (they did not taste like that however).
Finally, yesterday, after class, I had lunch at university – which I do not usually do on a Wednesday (I often go to the gym after class). I met with a couple of students. I met one of them last year when I did English corner. The other I had never met before, but she is the first student’s friend and both make an effort to chat with each other in English every day. This other student also wanted me to check through her personal statement and CV last week, which I did, so the lunch was partly a thank you for that.
We had more food than is shown here, which included tomato and egg soup, but these were the main ones. One is fish in a soup – which was more spicy than I usually like; the other I am not sure what it was. The white stuff is a squash of some sort (or, at least, that is what the translation said). I have eaten it before. It is a savoury dish, and covered with some sort of fruit sauce I think.