So we started the second semester at school which was bit of a shock to the system but there was light at the end of the tunnel because in a few weeks time the school was taking all the staff on a trip, something to look forward to. I asked where we were going only to be told some unpronounceable provinces and that we would see some flowers. What flowers I asked and the local teachers said “Rape Flowers.” At first I thought it was just an error in the translation of the Chinese name but I remembered our gardener in Zimbabwe used to grow Rape as a type of spinach and it is also known as Canola. So it has a very unsavoury name but a beautiful bright yellow flower which is what we were planning to see.
I say planning to see because the weather forecast wasn’t great and temperatures were still in the single figures, not conducive for blooming, as we left school on the Friday afternoon. We climbed onto one of the three buses only to discover that children were allowed too. The whole tour group totalled 160 people with lots of young kids hyped up on sugar and a 3.5 hour bus ride ahead, it wasn’t looking good. (more…)