What was supposed to be a teaching day for me has turned into something completely different. I decide to finish up all the laundry, now that the washing machine is working correctly. When that finishes, I walk over to Metro for my weekly grocery stop. Lillie gave me a list of cleaning supplies we’re low on. I’ve haven’t made any of these purchases since we arrived in July. I sort of over-bought back then. I didn’t know what we needed, so I bought lots of everything.
After Metro, it’s time to swim. I’ve figured out how to turn a swimming session into a whole afternoon. It’s a half-hour walk. The swim itself is takes me ½ hour. Then I have to sit in the hot tub for while, contemplating life. After the hot tub, I sit at one of the tables on the pool deck, reading an English version of China Daily, or the iPad, or both. It’s actually pretty interesting getting the world’s news through the eyes of China. When I finish reading, I shower, and usually head home.
Today though, I have a mission. Judy needs me to find some snacks (donuts or something) for the “Annie” cast for Sunday’s rehearsal. This is pretty tough work, finding snacks, but it’s job I’m well suited to. I looked earlier at Metro, but didn’t find anything suitable (by my high standards). I’ve decided to check out the South German Bakery for pastries. Samples will need to be taken. They really don’t have what I need, but I did pick up a fresh loaf of German bread that should taste really good, heated, with some butter.
As I head home from the bakery, I call Judy to check in. She had been headed home, but a group of BISS faculty were headed to Bluche to celebrate Mark’s (Brit) birthday. He’s been at BISS for 11 years. Also, the new drama teacher has arrived and she’s going to be at Bluche. When the taxi arrived at Bluche, the driver had been so erratic and angry, Judy was afraid to continue to the apartment. She decided to get out at Bluche and join the party. I guide my taxi over to Bluche, also. I don’t want to miss out on any fun.
The new drama teacher is in attendance. She has been teaching in New Zealand for 25 years, but she’s Scottish. There are a lot accents flying around the table with the Australians, New Zealanders, Canadians, Brits, Scots, Americans, and Spaniards, all adding to the conversations.
The real fun of the evening is hearing Shannon talk about the Jackie Chan experience from Tuesday. As it turns out, the producer (he’s a big-time name in China) has a pre-schooler at BISS, thus the invitation for BISS students. Shannon ends up serving as the “wrangler” for the 35 primary age student participants. She is ideal for this role. No one could have handled it better. She gets the chance to work with both the producer and Jackie Chan very closely as they set-up and shoot the footage. Shannon has some great pictures of the whole process, and is obviously right in the middle of it all, talking, and planning with Jackie Chan himself. She showed us the pictures on her computer, but had to sign a release stating she wouldn’t send them out, or I would have some posted here.
Shannon was so impressed with how well Jackie Chan worked with everyone, herself, and the especially the students. He was genuine, warm, helpful, and personable. Sometimes that isn’t the case with a “star”, but he was right in the middle of everything, including the kids. One of the kids knocked over some paint (the students were all painting, as part of the scene). Mr. Chan was the first one to get to the mess and start cleaning it up. The really funny part of the day is that the students didn’t really know anything at all about Jackie Chan, so to them, he was just another guy, who kept getting in their way.