I think I have had enough China for now. Not that I'm miserable or anything, but a bunch of little things are piling up. Most notably my stomach still seems unhappy at me over drinking the water or something which has just been making me vaguely uncomfortable the whole time. Not that I haven't gone out and things, it's just less enjoyable when you feel vaguely on the edge of being sick the whole time. Not being able to see well doesnt normally make me avoid doing things, but I think it makes the combination of a heavily non-English society and the fact that most of my attempts to work around it with various digital resources are screwed around with by the Great Firewall somewhat more difficult. The next time I travel to Asia, I will definitely get started earlier on the language. Obviously I can't learn the whole thing on the spur of the moment, but having had experience trying to learn an ideographic language I think I'd just focus as much as I can on trying to memorize useful vocabulary. Duolingo, in my experience, wasn't a good fit for ideographic languages for me and it was what I used for most of my Drill and Practice. Also I feel vaguely lonely from not being able to talk to people I know due to the timezone thing, and I'm starting to miss my cat a lot.
I have also completed the reason I was down here in the first place! It was, at least notionally, a technical conference. Obviously there was more we were doing in the way of coordination and work and planning and meetings and taking advantage of a bunch of poeple being here for corporate purposes. The conference was fairly good, though. That is, half of it was very good. The afternoons were devoted to tecnical presentations by developers, users, and systems administrators and they were excellent. The morning was devoted to talks by various C-level officers of various companies and were very 'business case' and very 'from thirty-thousand feet' and about as informative or interesting as a soliloquy by an adult in a Charlie Brown movie.
I fly out tomorrow! I'm not looking forward to the flight particularly since I usually find them cramped and uncomfortable, but this one wasn't particularly bad, and there are at least a couple movies I've been meaning to watch that they have available. And, as I said, I am generally looking forward to being in my own house with my own cat and all that.
One amusing thing. My hotel room has a 'do not disturb' switch rather than a hanger. I turned it on by accident at some point while looking for the lights and didn't realize it. For my first few days I kept getting voicemail from Housekeeping if I wouldn't please like to have them come and clean up the room? I feel slightly bad for it even if it's funny, as it sounded like they were getting desperate before I realized what was going on, as their messages started listening the benefits of a clean room as if they were trying to sell me on the idea.