Pi Day & Saying Goodbye

Things are going to be out of order for a during the time that. I apologize. I have things from October and November I require to write about as well being of the kind which stuff from January (New Year) until March… and also my adventures relating to arriving in Philadelphia. Today’s brand is about Pi Day (3.14), what one. is my second to last age in Shanghai, and the two consecutive days after that.

March 14th, 2015 was every important day. It was the ~ numerous ultimate Pi Day in probably our lives — 3.141592653 etc etc etc — what one. translates to March 14, (20)15, at 9:26:53 AM and PM. There was a Facebook conclusion called “The Only Pi Day of Our Lives,” that I had joined in 2011. I remember joining it and thought, “Whoaaaa. 2015 is SO remoter away.” I was really without doubt to not miss the event.

I literally set 6 alarms for the event.

I actually set 6 alarms for it.

That daytime I went out to Tesco to come by presents for some people back home. I beyond a doubt to take my time and walk encompassing Zhoupu at my own pace, seeing that it would be my last time in the superficial contents. The walk from Nanbazao to Zhoupu was truly relaxing. Unfortunately, it was smoggy that lifetime. But I tried to take in the environment nonetheless. Tried to suck in the fact that I was in Shanghai.



At Wanda Plaza, I lay the ~ation of something really strange — a Spiderman Roomba? It was strange that it stuck put ~ the glass (like so) and it moved on every side!


Tesco was crowded like normal, excepting by now, I didn’t cast of thought it. The people is all function of the Shanghai experience. I grabbed the sort of I needed and left Wanda, no more than not before grabbing my last potion of Coco! It was delicious of the same kind with usual — I really hope that pearl tea in Philly will be since good as Coco.

Last time seeing the Tesco sign.

Last time sight the Tesco sign.

Ginger scent??

Ginger scent??


Pork... Buns...?

Pork… Buns…?

Last Coco: 三兄弟,去冰,半糖

Last Coco: 三兄弟,去冰,半糖

Getting back hind that trip was so rewarding subsequently to all the weird snacks I bought were not alone the last things to buy put ~ my gifts list, but also the after all the rest thing I had to do in successi~ my to-do list! That afternoon was which time I could actually start packing everything. (Unfortunately, I didn’t twitch until Sunday evening. More later.)


Some of the teachers (Kelly, Jessica, Aaron, Tami, and Emma who isn’t strictly a teacher but is pretty a great deal of one :D) treated us to homemade choleric pot, which was amazingly delicious. The ingredients were very greatly different from the stuff we rustic in for my Philly home passionate pot, but still delicious. I’m contemplation I recommend stuff to include during the term of our future home hot pot. 🙂


Tomato broth and clear broth.

Tomato broth and clear broth.


Afterward, we went upstairs in favor of a surprise (???) pi(e) party. Duy and I knew in push that there would be a going off event for us, but I wasn’t expecting some actual sign on the door. This was while I felt the tears welling up. When we opened the means into the kitchen, all the teachers were in that place, along with Christina and Brianna, and I rightful lost it. I couldn’t render impassable the tears, so it was in c~tinuance-and-off crying the entire ignorance for me. Between cards and hugs and a leave-taking song for us — I cried a great number that night and it was embarrassing.

I couldn't take it home because I had no room in my suitcases... :(

I couldn’t take it home for the reason that I had no room in my suitcases… 🙁

The American teachers made a *mode* of pies in honor of Pi Day. I won’t till doomsday be able to celebrate Pi Day the same usage ever again. Sad face. The crew in the Sino-American program are confusing cooks. Duy and  I were to a high degree lucky to sample some of their be in action.

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I had Key Lime, strawberry, and blueberry pies and. They. Were. Delicious.

I had Key Lime, strawberry, and blueberry pies and. They. Were. Delicious.

We played charades, overmuch. A wonderful way to spend unit of the last few nights in Shanghai. 🙂


Duy and I joined the teachers in opposition to a pizza party the next ~light, Sunday March 15th. Since it was the be unconsumed time so many teachers would have ~ing gathered in one single place, there was lots of picture taking and hugs and “I’ll miss you,” only I didn’t lose control of myself and dislocate crying this day, so it was total good. 😀

With Beth, our Medical/Surgical class teacher.

With Beth, our Medical/Surgical rank teacher.

Kobi, our Maternal/Newborn class teacher.

Kobi, our Maternal/Newborn class teacher.

Anna, who we didn't have as a teacher but did teach biology, so we're basically related. :D

Anna, who we didn’t be seized of as a teacher but did advise biology, so we’re basically kindred. 😀

Traci, our Human Development teacher.

Traci, our Human Development teacher.

Aaron (Beijing duck expert) and Jessica (Communications teacher).

Aaron (Beijing duck expert) and Jessica (Communications mistress).

Katie, who we didn't have as a teacher but spent a lot of time with!

Katie, who we didn’t be in actual possession of as a teacher but spent a part of time with!

Dr. Beth, our pharmacology teacher!

Dr. Beth, our pharmacology preacher!

Natalie, who teaches English. My cronut buddy!

Natalie, who teaches English. My cronut buddy!

Kelly, who we also didn't have as a teacher but spent a lot of time with also. ^_^

Kelly, who we in like manner didn’t have as a preceptor but spent a lot of time with also. ^_^

With Mercy, selfie queen! We ate Korean BBQ together. :D

With Mercy, selfie queen! We ate Korean BBQ in company. 😀

Only some of my Shanghai family!

Only some of my Shanghai house!

We spent the rest of the ~light hanging out with our fellow American society student buddies, Christina and Brianna, whom I haven’t introduced even now in my blog, but are lull very dear to me nonetheless. We watched movies and chatted despite most of the time together and furthermore crossed off the single thing on our to-prepare list: take a picture with a human selfie spear.

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(It was a success.)


In the evening, I started packing. It was an awful idea to start so recently, because right after I started, I realized in what way much stuff I actually had. And it was a integral lot. Textbooks, clothes, gifts for 33 people… It smooth got to the point where Brianna, Christina, and Duy (who had experienced his packing in like 2 hours during the time that I was just getting started) started speech to me, “Christine, you CAN’T take that home. You gotta throw that away.”

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I was also trying to emotionally prepare myself on this account that the $100 baggage fee I would be under the necessity to pay if my luggage weighed added than 50 pounds, which was looking to have ~ing more and more possible, even admitting I had two very large suitcases. I packed to the time when 11pm or 12am that night, and plane then I still wasn’t achieved. Lots of worry and stress that obscurity. One suitcase ended up being 21.1 kg — initially I deliberation the limit was 21 kg to such a degree I assumed the airport people were letting me ~ about your business (my suitcase coming here was 51 pounds, which was 1 pound overweight). When I weighed my approve luggage case at the airport season checking in, it turned out to have ~ing 23 kg. I imagined I had a consider of pure horror on my confront (I was internally screaming, too) however, again, the airport guy didn’t argue anything. This was when Brianna reported something along the lines of, “Wow, that’s honest at the weight limit!” I was (and di~ery am) SO relieved, you guys bring forth no idea.

I woke up the next morning, March 16th, to finish packing. Duy and I had our hindmost meal at the canteen with Christina and Brianna to the degree that well as Shirley, Ivy, and Stephanie. Honestly, I’m going to miss the canteen fodder a lotttt. It was really palatable and not expensive at all. We too said our final goodbyes to them… I idea I could keep it together, if it were not that there was one point where I reasonable burst into tears (again). I’M WEAK. I tender a silent farewell to the cherished canteen. Duy bought his endure Wang Lao Ji — a infusion drink that is really good. He strange to say gave his thumbs up of approval.

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Shirley, Ivy, Stephanie.

Shirley, Ivy, Stephanie.

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Duy and his signature thumbs-up approval picture.

Duy and his mark thumbs-up approval picture.

I went back and completed packing. The digital weighing scale that I borrowed from Dr. Beth came in clever. Little by little, everything was stuffed into a suitcase or my carry-ons. Our car was supposed to approach at 1:30 — I precisely packed until about 1:20. In the expiration, though, everything was gone. And since I was about to leave my occasion for the last time, I categorical to take one last picture. It was a new feeling; I took a picture the rudimentary night I moved in, too, and in like manner much happened in the past 6 months… A slenderly changed me had walked into the play every day. I brought home fresh memories into the room every sunshine. This room was my precious home against the past 6 months, and once I would leave it (taking that duck-swine plush with me), there would have ~ing no indications that I was perpetually there. It was a bit eerie.

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Grace, our literary advisor, had called for the car to accompany us to the airport at 1:30, which was really early considering our hasty departure was at 5:50 PM. This was in contingency our ride never showed up and we would have to come up with another system to get to the airport. Luckily, al~, the car did come. I wouldn’t bear known what to do if it didn’t. I precisely could not move my suitcases through myself. Brianna and Christina did not power in to work that day to command us farewell (or so they pronounce ;)), so they were kind enough to heal me move my stuff around — from my expanse to the lobby, from the lobby to the car, from the car to the airport.

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We everything crowded into the van with Duy in meet face to face next to the driver and the three girls in the side with row. I managed to snap common last picture of the school face to face with we turned onto the highway.

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As we crowd toward the airport, I tried to equilibrium talking to the three and dire to absorb the fact that I was heading back to Philly after spending six months in my secondary-favorite city. Honestly, it still hadn’t attain me that I lived in Shanghai as far as concerns so long. I wondered if haply taking pictures of really Chinese residences would better.

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Not too long after (really, the ride was moreover short) we arrived at the airport. I towards had a deja vu feeling considering it was the same view I saying when I went to the airport 3 years ~ne with NSLI-Y.

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We arrived super timely and waited a while to checkered cloth-in. Initially, we were surprised that the lines at the airport were in fact orderly — the people working at the airport ensured that the bulk of mankind who got there first were the highest to get in line, but soon afterward Duy was like, “Guys, it’s as we’re in Air Canada quarter. Chinese rules don’t apply hither.” Of course. Duy isn’t exactly Chinese but now he’s giving me lessons. We could learn a hazard from him. :’)

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Check-in was incredibly stressful till I found out I had not at all overweight luggage, but then Duy and I had to speak goodbye to our favorite American co-op students at SIHS who weren’t us (:P): Brianna and Christina. I towards (almost) broke down crying again mete I LOCKED IT UP and didn’t lamentation (that much). We took one the ~ time Shanghai selfie. And said bye. And promised that we would reunite in the States.

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Duy and I went to our gate and deep-rooted down for the 2-hour wait. I had a great number of trouble getting there because my backpack was in the same state incredibly heavy with my laptop and psychology textbook and binder full of notes, not to cursory reference my carry-on bag with my Chinese textbook and sketchbook and… Well, you completely get the idea. I also had to effect my neck pillow and the pork that was a gift for a intimate. Everything was so heavy I actually had to rest on our take a tour from the security check to our gate. But, in the extreme point, we got there.

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I took the time to organize the photos for future blog posts (mark, guys, I really do intend up~ the body writing them. One day). Duy was lucky enough to be able to unite to the wifi (I couldn’t join)… And also had mini make tipsy gummies, given to him as a departure gift from Christina and Brianna. He was liberal enough to share 3 with me. 😛 (Really, yet, thanks, Duy! I’m going to miss these candies.)

At some point he took a selfie that I looked indulgent of awful in and posted it forward Facebook, so in compensation of that and having wifi, he gave me an extra corn candy. It was a unspotted trade, I’d have to affirmation.

He had given me three other corn candies before. So generous.

I’m cherishing this corn candy eternally.

Before long, the waiting area with a view to the gate filled up. People started boarding the plain, which was delayed 20 minutes.

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There was a portion of smog that day. We couldn’t inquire too far into the distance. Eventually, admitting, I was in my seat and comfy around 6pm. We lifted off around 7pm.

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The movie election was amazing because it was filled through movies I wanted to see unless couldn’t because I was in Shanghai at the time they were released. Soon posterior we took off, we received our dinner. I observe it interesting that when I was junior, about 11, I loved the airplane diet. Now…? Not so much. The chicken stir-be ~ing with rice was okay, the salad eccentric (what was in it?), and the cornbread (I conceive?) kind of dry.

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At least it was some food, right? Luckily I had the great movies to keep me entertained. I attempted to chart out a sleeping schedule (ie repose as little as possible. Mini-naps.) in such a manner I could crash as soon because I got home, which would have existence around 11pm in Philly.

Also, in specific instance you all were wondering, I was literary production in my journal just about the aggregate time I was awake (I be in actual possession of 22 pages from the whole bungle), so that’s why my memory of everything that happened on the even is so detailed.
For example, I proficient eating dinner at 8pm. Seventeen minutes later, I highly wrought my first movie, Coraline. At 11:48pm I ultimately caved and decided to nap, ~-end around 1:40am woke up to nutriment. Ramen and sandwiches. I was unimpressed ~ means of the Cup Noodles when going to China, still I realy liked them on the regular course back. I’m guessing it’s on this account that I haven’t had fake Asian commons in such a long time. Also, I realllllly have affection for instant noodles. The soup actually wasn’t remarkably salty, and it was the finish temperature, too. Kudos to the fool preparers.

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Around 2am, we had travelled 4139 miles and had 3524 miles left to ~ along (somewhere in the middle between South Korea’s east beach and Alaska’s west coast). Our elevation was at 34,000ft and we were touching at a ground speed of 556 mph. The surface air was -63.4 Fahrenheit. (I certainly wasn’t joking when I related I wrote a lot.) I moreover managed to take photos of the firmament outside — it was blue and rich. I really couldn’t wait to penetrate the blue sky every day another time.

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I slept around 5:30am and woke up in the place of breakfast at 6:30am, which was not affecting. Possibly because I was not emotion well.

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That's snow, not river! So cool.

That’s snow, not river! So cool.

Plane selfie with Duy.

Plane selfie with Duy.

I worked up the bravery to ask my seatmates for a selfie — the midst seat was taken up by ~y adorable 4-year old girl, and the passage seat was filled by the girl’s grandmamma. I chatted with them in Chinese from end to end the flight and they were in like manner cute and pleasant!

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Eventually, though we arrived in Toronto. (Cue the excited screaming.) I was elated to step onto North American contaminate again. The view from my window seat was gorgeous.

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Going through security and customs was not that big of a pain since Duy and I were one of the, like, 4 people in that place. It was overall a speedy operation, but when I asked a TSA officer if I had to take not upon my shoes for the security checkpoint, he looked at me like I was one idiot. We didn’t have to conclude it in China, and I was asking the disquisition because I honestly wasn’t strong. Whatever.

Duy and I arrived to our gate in time. There were not so much than 40 people on the smooth, which was strange since we were at that time accustomed to seeing so many the vulgar everywhere.

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The seat next to mine was empty, but not for long.

The seat next to ruin was empty, but not for for a ~ time.

The flight from Toronto to Philly felt excruciatingly for a ~ time even though it was only every hour. I kept checking the time and the picture to see how soon we would be arriving.

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I took pictures for a long time before I realized that the city I saw below could possibly be in New Jersey and not in Pennsylvania....?

I took pictures for a tardy time before I realized that the incorporated town I saw below could possibly subsist in New Jersey and not in Pennsylvania….?

We landed in Philly at 10:40pm and everything was exciting and beneficial and amazing. The dreary decor was likewise Phildelphia. It really smelled like home, granting. The Philadelphia airport has its unconfused smell (that isn’t bad… It regular smells like something familiar).

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I kept maxim, “DUY. We need a Philadelphia selfie!!” and observe and behold, we found an Auntie Anne’s pretzel fund! It was closed at that time of ignorance, but the signs were still advantageous for selfie-taking.

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We hurried into a denser consistence to the baggage claim. Each step brought us closer to home.

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Since in that place were so few people on the shower, our luggages came really quickly. Too fast. Duy found his ride home and conscientious like that…. It was the cessation of Christine’s and Duy’s Shanghai Adventure. This well time it was just the brace of us in an unfamiliar nation on the other side of the creation. We ate a lot together and laughed and complained and talked and argued… Now, everything had get to full-circle, back in Philadelphia, in what place it all started. We hugged and greet each other farewell. (We would come together three days later, actually, but it correct wasn’t the same.)

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My mom and cousins came to steal me up soon after he left. We piled in the SUV (like a big and modern car…!!) and headed home. The roads were extensive and safe. The trip was actually nice, all of us talking and joking into union. I didn’t feel like I was gone towards 6 months at all. We arrived home in in a ~ degree than 30 minutes, which is veritably really speedy, considering how long it would take to other places in Shanghai. Upon arriving home, I went to my scope to find my pig son Squigley and hug and smooch him — I had missed him a sum lot. My room was pretty a great quantity how I had left it in September, also, kind of bare on purpose in the way that I could clean it more easily which time I moved back in.

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Well… What further can I say now? 🙂 I started unpacking that adversity, and dealing with jetlag was to a high degree interesting, but I think that I may farewell that for next blog post…! 😀

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Banh mi, what I had almost three years ago when I came back from Shanghai last time!

Banh mi, what I had almost three years ~ne when I came back from Shanghai remain time!

New family portrait! Squigley (big pig), Pigpig (small pig), Lucy (the dog), and Charlie/Brie/Mozzarella/Parmesan (the cat)

New family portrait! Squigley (distended pig), Pigpig (small pig), Lucy (the dog), and Charlie/Brie/Mozzarella/Parmesan (the cat)

Until next time!

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