Saturday, July 15, 2006

Bon Voyage parties and heading home...




We seemed to have endless farewell parties for Kathy Chen and her family. We hosted one for the office here and they hosted two.. one for friends from school at their home and one for Chinese and work friends at a nice restaurant downtown. Last night we had our final farewell with Chen/Moy family.

Charles and LIMing Wong, the parents of Javer, Jacob’s other very excellent friend, had us all out to a nice Thai dinner. They are leaving too. It is midnight now and we are leaving tomorrow. Javier and Andrew are sleeping over. We just wanted the kids to have as much time together as possible.

They are great kids and have been great friends to Jacob since day one. It is really hard to believe still, after all these farewells, that when we return in August they will not be here. They have been such big parts of our lives here since day one and I am the only one not deeply affected by their loss. Becky loses Kathy, the rock of the office and each of the kids loses one of their very dearest friends. I really feel like Kathy is as close to a soul sister as Becky has ever had. They have a lot in common. It’s like they grew up n parallel universes.. Kathy is the Chinese Becky, Becky t he Jewish Kathy.

So it’s really sad to see them leave, but the bon voyage parties were great fun.

Anyhow, we are out of here tomorrow afternoon. I will make a few posts while gone but of course it will slow down. I will see many of you in the next few weeks and I’m sorry for anyone we miss.

Our first year in Beijing is pretty much over, and it has exceeded our hopes for the most part. Writing this blog has been a great thing for me, really helped keep me focused and sharp on what we’re doing and going through. So thanks to everyone who read it, wrote back, encouraged me. Writing the column will be a bit harder the second year – I’ve already picked the low-hanging fruit. So your feedback will be most welcomed, as always.