{September 6, 2007}   back in china

loads of things I haven’t blogged about, eh?
for starters, I am a very *very* lucky girl. I replaced the thermal grease on the laptop, put it through some tests, and did not see a single problem. it actually appears to be undamaged! (now watch as a power surge kills it just to prove me wrong)

I’m back in china again, and classes start on monday. didn’t spend any time in shanghai on the way back, and it turns out that was good – me and pete reached the school tuesday night, and in the morning when we went to get breakfast, we found out there was all this registration stuff to be done, and new student cards to get, and so on. we were going to have to write a placement test as well, which would have no actual effect on our placement, but after waiting in line for a while, we were told not to do it. ahh, bureaucracy :P

my hatred for bureaucracy grew on thursday. we had some sheet of paper in chinese telling us that we were supposed to do various things, one of which was going to zijingang campus (a half hour bus ride away) for.. something to do with registration. me and ivan were the only ones actually awake in hte morning, and ivan told me that we were supposed to be there at 8:30 – we left school at about 8:20.
we decided to take a cab to get there faster. ha. the cab driver didn’t know where the campus was – we pointed it out to him on the map, and then he didn’t know how to *get* there. he made some phone calls, drove a bit, stopped to ask random bystanders, did some more driving and stopping to ask people… eventually we got there, later than we would have if we took the bus, and 27 kuai poorer :P (he did reduce the price by 2 kuai to make up for his incompetence, though).
we managed to find the right building – luckily it wasn’t far away, ’cause that campus is huge – but then it turned out that we weren’t supposed to be there until 1:30. it was about 9:20 by this point. :P so we went alll the way back home (by bus this time).
we went out again after lunch, and had to fill out some papers for yet another new piece of ID, and then wait a couple hours to watch a lecture about registration… in fast chinese. neither of us could understand it, so after half an hour we gave up and headed out (and on the way out, found out from a teacher that all the info in the lecture was repeated in one of the books we were given – still in chinese of course, but at least we can use a dictionary with that).
happily, I got back just in time to go out for dinner at the fancy vegetarian restaurant, and that was delicious. man that was a long day. now it’s friday, and I’m just messing around on the computer.

I was expecting to have to adjust to china’s pollution all over again when I got back, but it’s been a lot easier this time. just got a bit of a cough – much milder than the first time I was exposed to this air. the temperature is much nicer too – it was a cloudy wet day when we arrived in shanghai, and the temperature was only 25 or so :) it was almost as if we hadn’t left vancouver. the weather’s back to being sunny now, but it’s still a lot cooler than when I left hangzhou. I can actually have the air conditioning off and not be dripping sweat! :)

I’m feeling a lot better now – far more energy, probably from eating so well in canada, an interest in actually reading some of my many books, and even a little enthusiasm for learning chinese again :) yay vacation! I seem to feel best in the morning, though. maybe because the air is actually at a temperature that could be called ‘cool’ then.

I’ve been a bit behind on news, but it looks like things have been going well in the open source world – OOXML lost the vote (by a margin small enough to concern me, though) and AMD has promised not only opensource drivers, but documentation too! :) I had resigned myself to getting an intel system next, but with this news maybe I can have AMD (I’ve always preferred their processors).

I never did blog about all the fun stuff in canada, and I’m not sure if I’ll ever get around to it… anyways, I’ve decided that it’s time I get kde4 up to date, so I’m going to go play with that now. :)

et cetera
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