Hosting Teens from Chengdu, China

Hosting Teens from Chengdu, China

Last evening, I drove to Gas Works Park to pick up the two Chinese exchange students that we will be hosting for the next 19 days. Since I had seen the girls’ photos, I was able to recognize them quickly. I had also read their letters, so, I was able to tell them what I remembered about them.

Once home, I gave the girls a tour of the house and introduced them to my husband and two cats.  I also gave them gift bags with some handing things in them.

Though I had made spaghetti for dinner, they girls weren’t hungry, having eaten a sandwich at the park before I arrived. I had them put clothes in their designated drawers and get settled while I cleaned up the kitchen. When they came back down from their room, they presented me and William with gifts. I got three beautiful fans, a bookmark, postcards/note cards, jewelry, tea, chopsticks, and a cute, little bobble-head panda, which I intend to put in my car.

The youngest, Peggy, went back upstairs while the oldest, Lily, joined me in the living room. From her letter, I was expecting Lily to be the shy one, but she was more talkative than Peggy. Both asked me to use the phone to call home, using calling cards that they brought with them. I asked them to limit the conversations to five minutes so they wouldn’t use up all their minutes. Both girls have a pretty good grasp of the English language. For words they didn’t understand, they looked up on the computer. Peggy went to take a shower while Lily watched TV with me. She was full of questions.

I got them settled for the night, but had a terrible time getting to sleep…my mind was racing with all the things I wanted to do with the girls…places I wanted to take them. I finally fell asleep around 3am, only to wake back up at 3:30 and again at 5:30. Ugh!

I got up at 8am and prepared breakfast. Since I hadn’t had a chance to go to the store and get cereal for them to eat, I made congee. Congee is a rice porridge that is a common breakfast in a lot of Asian countries. Being from Sechuan, I wasn’t surprised that Peggy used a lot of the hot chili oil I had put out as a condiment.

I packed the girls a lunch of peanut butter and jelly sandwiches, blueberries, and cheese crackers. I had also gotten each of them a water bottle and put their names on them. I found it quite amusing to watch them take pictures of their lunch and bottle.

Soon it was time to take them to Om Culture where they would be spending their week days. I’ll pick them back up at 5pm.

Tomorrow, I plan to take them to the Olympic Peninsula via the Edmonds/Kingston ferry. We’ll stop in Sequim at the Olympic Game Farm (where they can see a real American buffalo), then drive to Hurricane Ridge.

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