This is my student’s cousin who is so sweet. Unfortunately it’s been a long time since I was there and I can’t remember her Chinese name now. I do remember that she asked me to give her an English name and I suggested Haley because it sounded a little like her real name. Haley is a junior in high school – crunch time for the Gao Kao, China’s crazy college entrance exam. She had Friday night and Saturday morning off from school so I was able to hang out with her right when I got there. But once the school week started (the weekend lasted from Friday evening to Saturday afternoon), I barely saw her again. It was insane to see how much time she spent in class studying. She started classes at 6:30 in the morning, came home in the afternoon for two hours for lunch and a nap and then didn’t come home at night again until around 10:30. She knew that she was doing a lot of work, but she seemed relatively happy and fine with the whole thing.

On another note, I saw this little rabbit in a cage in the kitchen when I first walked into the apartment. I was convinced he was going to be dinner until Haley came home, scooped him up in her arms, fed him some lettuce and introduced him to me as her pet. I felt instantly relieved.

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