Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Day 1 @ Shanghai

The exciting day is finally coming to an end and it is time to keep everyone posted of our activities for the day. Early in the morning, the strong support from the parents has indeed given us the extra encouragement that all the preparation for the trip is definitely worthwhile. The pupils are well-prepared by parents and the briefings conducted, and they are so independent that they are managing their own luggages. Kudos to the parents who have spent time and effort in getting your child prepared!

The team definitely felt like superstars when the flash from cameras kept blinding us at the airport. With high spirits, we boarded the plane and .... Shanghai, here we come! The pupils behaved extremely well and exceeded the expectations of the teachers. There is no need for any one of us to stand and remind them to be considerate. They did not change their seats assigned and actually spent the 5-hour getting to know new friends. The pupils are also observed to have the confidence to approach the air stewardness at varied point to request for water to quench their thirst. :)

Finally, we touched down at Shanghai Pudong International Airport. Before we could give our instructions to keep warm, the pupils have already wrapped themselves in beautiful scarf, sweater, windbreaker and glooves. Many of them were in awe when they stared at the display board in the Maglev train, indicating a speed of 431 km/h! Instead of taking pictures of the scenery, they were busy capturing the digits on the display board. Before the pupils could admire the scenery along the way, it was time to alight! Ha!

The journey to the hotel did not seem that long though we were told that it would take an hour long. As the sky was very dark and seemed like 9 p.m. though it was only 6 p.m., many of us felt very hungry. Was it the effect of the cold weather or the darkness? No matter what, the pupils definitely had a scrumptous meal with at least 9 different dishes served. It was noted that a number of pupils do not like to eat vegetables and they have to be reminded to take more. The vegetables served here are of great variety and they are very fresh.... yummy.....delicious!

After the dinner, we had a common debrief session with the girls from CHIJ Our Lady of Good Counsel. The team then had another de-brief on our own and several reminders were highlighted: table manners, wastage of food and water, being responsibile of own belongings, and communication with parents and teachers. The team then rehearsed an item that will be put up tomorrow during the school visit before heading back to the room to take a good night rest.

Some girls keep frightening themselves and comment that the rooms are very dark. Upon checking by the teacher, they have left the wire disconnected when they drew the curtains! Well, to the parents out there, do not worry as the pupils are actually calling us direct on our mobile and even our room's extension when they need assistance. :) They are indeed, independent.

On a last note, the person-in-charge has tried to purchase the pre-paid card for the pupils but they are out-of-stock. We will continue to try from other locations first thing in the morning tomorrow and for parents who have been waiting for your child to call, apologies in keeping all of you waiting. You may consider contacting the teachers direct and we will pass the message to your child and if possible, get them to answer the call.

By now, all the pupils should be asleep and we shall go for our second round of check again! Oh, we forced them to complete half a bottle of water on top of what they had earlier, before they sleep..... going for our walk now. Bye!

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