On Field Trips

29 Jan
Dear Blog,

  Today was Field Trip Day.
  I recall a time when everyone looked forward to field trips with the intensity of a thousand times. It appears, though, that the times have indeed changed. The times are now so that people groan with dread at the prospect of a field trip, and silently pray that it would rain.
  I guess that’s life.
  Say what you want, the field trip wasn’t all THAT bad. 9th Grade is…well, hilarious. Admittedly, the bus was chaotic with all the screaming (and occasional bursts of joyous song), but what was to be expected? At least the idiocy was moderately under control. Well, not really, but if I say it enough times, maybe I’ll believe that. So yeah, the situation was totally under control, and I did not need to turn the MP3 up to an eardrum-shattering volume to hear the music and drown out the otherworldly sounds.
  If I repeat that…enough times, too…
  At least the trip wasn’t to the Science Museum. I mean, nothing against that, it’s pretty cool, but everyone’s been there n+1 times already. Or DongFangLvZhou. Or…yeah. It wasn’t some thoroughly educational trip with us having to, er, take notes or anything, which was fortunate. Imagine how terrible it would have been if we had to memorize historical facts and make PPTs about the trip afterward.
  As the saying goes, "always look on the bright side of life". The HongLouMeng place wasn’t exactly stunning, but the whole group-activity-and-idiocy thing was funny. We have some 9th Grade Patriots in our class. Oh well…our grade is sort of cool. (Aside from the fact that I’m in it, of course. XD.) 
Everyone had lunch at this little table-place outside while the other, less awesome grades had lunch sheltered inside a teahouse. That’s secretly because they couldn’t face the…open air…like Real Men. Or Women. Or Man-Women. Woman-Men? HAHAHA…Okay, I’m going stark-raving bonkers. I’ll return to normal…and normal font too. Somehow Cantonese and Shanghainese have wormed their way into the trends. Now everyone’s insulting each other in the hope that they’d get away with it. Which sort of defeats the purpose because everyone knows the same swearwords, and end up having some kind of fight. After years of neglect, I am slowly remembering the Shanghainese…language? Dialect? this year.
  And also: somehow we discovered Terry’s epic chopsticking skills. How very…unique, I guess. Terry’s superpower would probably be…er…"Ability to pick up anything using chopsticks." Which isn’t very useful, but maybe he could pick his enemies up using enormous chopsticks of sorts. Nevermind this…it doesn’t make much sense…
  To memory of Mr. McNamara: "Today I learned exactly how to make PaoMian, which was put everything in it and wait."
  There was too much PaoMian anyway, so I gave it away. What a waste. But I’ll not think about that. It’s just too depressing. We’ll all look on the Bright Side Of Life. Isn’t that much, much better now? Yes, you DO feel much better now.
  The second part of the trip took place in ZhuJiaJiao, where it was basically the same anywhere around those places. Little alleyways, some water, boats, little shops and perhaps an occasional teahouse. The shops sell the same things at the same price, and if you happened to go to some other sightseeing area similar to this one, you find that they, too, sell the same food with slight variations on other stuff depending on location. Ironically, the price difference doesn’t seem to ever exceed 10 yuan. This tells you a LOT about Shanghai. You see one, you’ve seen ’em all. The only thing surprising was that we didn’t take SanLunChe to be smuggled in, like all the other places. Rule of Shanghai: where there is an entrance ticket, there is a way AROUND the entrance ticket. (That costs less than half the original price, I might add.) Everyone went around and bought those useless things that everyone wants but nobody needs, and food that everyone wants but nobody eats. It was a waste of time and money, which was the primary function of sightseeing places like these.
  Hey, I’m not being critical. Even I bought useless stuff. Like two bracelets that will probably break into many different sections within days, but whatever! I wanted it, but that didn’t mean that I needed it. I’m only human after all. The owner said that it cost 10 yuan each at first, which was just a goddamn ripoff, but I wormed my way easily into 5 yuan apiece. I know as much as he did that it was far too pricey. Which was why, I suppose, he gave up that easily. It could’ve been even cheaper, I suspect. Too late now, I guess.
  I take pride in not buying any more useless stuff other than that. The box of strange pastry (that I plan to give away at all costs now that I’ve tasted it) and ice-cream did NOT count. It did NOT.
  I can’t believe that I’ve written so much. So, goddamned much. Anyone who reads this far must leave a comment. I mean, my hard work typing this has to be repaid in some kind of way, right? Compared to this freakishly long blog, a comment is nothing! NOTHING! So, er, what I mean is, leave a comment. Yeah.
  The bus trip back to school was definitely much quieter than the one coming. As I had correctly predicted, everyone gets tired towards the end of the trip and will have no more energy to burst into song. Instead, the boys displayed symptoms of idiocy by lying on top of each other and sleeping. Hina bought a strange 麦芽糖 thingy that was fun to play with but a disaster to consume. James and, er, Jack (I think?) bought a strange mask-thing each that made them look like middle-aged perverted men (jkjk…It’s fine. Look on the bright side of life.). In addition to that, Jack bought a gun-shaped thing with an extendable fist that James and everyone else played (and annoyed other people) with. This would be an example of low self-control. It results in strange stuff bought and most probably broken/thrown into a cupboard somewhere in the near future.
  Oh! And how could I forget those little stuffed Chinese Lions we got in the morning? For some reason, I suddenly remember them. It’s probably got to do with the fact that I’m trying to balance mine on my head right now. It isn’t working.
  If nothing else, they seem to bounce rather well when thrown at people. At least they’re good for SOMETHING.
  I guess that’s it for the field trip.


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