Breakfast was filled with the usual mixture of American and Asian food groups and everyone arrived for breakfast at their usual time excited and talking about the planned celebrations or parties at their respective schools. Our original driver, James was still out of town, so me and the volunteers from my program school rode to school, again in the fancy car belonging to the school president. After a short morning of teaching English and a quick round of Bingo. Maryann, Grace, Bill and I ended out final day with a Halloween party with many of the students from our English classes. There were performances of aerobic dancing, singing and several good-bye speeches. We enjoyed a final lunch with all of the English teachers from our school, and had a long tearful goodbye session with hugs before riding away looking sad and feeling rather gloomy.
We meet the other volunteers in the hotel lobby, who were also returning from their school, looking teary eyed in the lobby and everyone departed for the dreadful task of packing, and repacking and then repacking again.
By six o’clock, everyone meet in the small banquet room for our final dinner together. Our group opted and paid extra for the special Dumpling Banquet, to end our program with a great celebration party. The Dumpling Banquet consisted of 14 different types of dumplings, made into cute shapes of various animals and flowers. We toasted to our great Team Leader, Baoli and the many memories of Xi’an, its people and most importantly, the students that will go home with us in our hearts, lasting a lifetime.