Before you start again, you've got to leave. And I've been leaving now for about 6 weeks. I had my first farewell on 1 November with teachers then with students from my old centre, then a surprise farewell at my second centre 7 November, then another surprise farewell on 11 November, and dotted all around then and ever since are the small personal farewells. Even after being sent on my way, I crashed at least two other leaving parties. And embarrassingly had to go into a couple of the centres later to do some scanning and printing only to confronted by students of the belief that I'd already landed in New Zealand. (I'd been always clear that I was returning home in December but they'd assumed that my farewell was going to be the absolutely last time they saw me.)
Part of the problem was that we'd planned to go travelling after the end of my contract and it didn't happen because I lost my passport. My bag thief ironically saved us a lot of time, money and stress. Only through his intervention did we save on travel, but allowed me to finish my diploma work on time, plentiful time to pack, gave us time to make a little money and prepare for the time ahead. And now, pretty much, we have a couple of busy yet leisurely days of doing things we want to do, like reading, writing, walking and talking.
Winter has come to Guangdong though which has been keeping us inside. I hope tomorrow brings sun to my last three days in China.