And I thought I was ok... - 30 kilometers Xian -- Tue, Jul 19, 2005 After the interesting night before.... I had a short, dehydrated ride to Xi'an. Given that the taxi cab driver from last night was parading around in some new Shimano shoes -- I had to do the 30km in moccosins...
I met up with Fang Wen Guang and the founder of the autism organization in Xi'an. Again -- another incredible school, and incredible story. The school was started in 2002 after a group of parents set up a group to discuss what to do about their special needs children. They had relatively no options -- their were only a few government supported "special schools" in Xi'an that could not meet the level of need, and eventhen, the quality of the schools was suspect. Regular schools would not accept their children and the parents needed to work -- but wanted to see their children progress.
They came to the decision that they had to do something on their own and now have established the premier school for children with disabilities in Xi'an (as usual, with no government funding, little community awareness, etc, etc. many difficulties). The teachers at these schools amaze me -- one on one attention and incredible patience. We did a tour later in the day -- and say them working hard on review plans, what they had done that day and what they needed to work on with their kids. Really dedicated.
There are four western student volunteers working at the school for the summer (two from England with Eye-To-Eye, and two from the states with CCS) . We went out from drinks with them that night... it was fun but a big mistake... the stomach flu would return that night with a vengance