Well, I was originally supposed to have classes at a training center this week, for a winter program they were having, teaching kids from 3 to 14. But, it ended up getting cancelled, so my vacation began this week!
So now, with not much to do (since my girlfriend still has to work during the week), and since many of the students with whom I have become friends have gone home, I've basically just been focusing on doing two things that I had become too lazy about over the past few weeks: working out and studying Chinese.
You may think, "well you're already in China, why do you need to study it?" The problem is, certainly being here helps a LOT in terms of exposure to both written and especially spoken language, but there's still so many words I just dont know, so I gotta keep at it.
Chinese New Year is a HUGE holiday here, it is their Christmas. The city gets decorated, the stores get super crowded, the same thing everyone back home was doing a month ago. Anyway, most of the time, people go home for Chinese New Year. My girlfriend's home is in Harbin (way way way northern China, practically Siberia. In fact Harbin is FAMOUS for its enormous ice sculptures). But she may not go home for the holiday. If she doesn't, the week she has off, we're thinking about flying down to Guangzhou for a few days. Guangzhou is in southern China, and latitude-wise it is like Havana, Cuba, so it should be nice and warm. The tickets are actually pretty cheap. Round trip for one seat is about $90.
By the way, to any of you who are reading, if anyone ever feels like giving me call you can do so at (813) 990-0980. Using Skype, I was able to set up a local Tampa number. Anyone can call this number just as you would any other number in Tampa, and its a local call (if you're in Tampa. If you're not in Tampa, it's still the same as if you are calling to Tampa). It goes to my Skype. If my Skype is on and I am home, I will answer it on my computer. If my Skype is not on, or I am not home, after a few rings it will get forwarded to my cell phone here in China.