Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Final Day of BACT Program... Sad Story

This is it! The final day of the BACT program! The time here has flown by so fast, it seems we have done so much stuff in such a short amount of time. We didn't have to be at the university until 1:30 today, so we had the whole morning to work on our project's last minute touch ups and practicing. Our powerpoint was coming together nicely so we then divvied up what slides people were saying. We ended right on time, so we had just enough time to go and have lunch in the university's cafeteria. We took a 10 minute break to gather our stuff, and then we were off to campus! Richard came down in a fancy button down and slacks! So fancy!! Jimmy also had a nice attire, but ironic how the girls just wore normal tank tops and shorts! I thought it was the girls who usually like to get dressed up? But it was ok, our group looked fabulous... ready to get this presentation finished! After a delicious noodle lunch, we headed to the conference room to prepare. We had a quick final exam, which wasn't bad at all, and then the other professors arrived; indicating it was time to start! We were the first to present, which I preferred anyway, and it went so smoothly! Everyone did a great job, I was really impressed at how much detail and thoughtfulness every group put into their project. Even some of the tough professor questions afterwards didn't frazzle people. After the presentations, the most hilarious slide show that Jack put together was shown. The room was filled with booming laughter. It encompassed the funny moments of this trip, as well as the group's inside jokes.
(left) Richard and I, (right) Jiling and Jimmy. We are all waiting, excited, for our group's turn to present our research!

Our last group jump shot! Hooray! We finished!! Now FOOOOOD!
 After all of the groups presented their project, and the closing ceremony was done, it was time for dinner. We walked out of the university just a little ways, past the mrt station (where we have gone so many times during this program) and then made it to our restaurant for the night: Just Italy. It was more up scale, compared to the more local food stalls and family owned restaurants that we have been feasting at. But it was an all-you-can-eat buffet style, with a big pasta and dessert bar! I thought it was kind of funny that we were eating at an Italian place for our last official meal in Taiwan, but it was still so yummy! Thenight consisted of yummy food, funny conversations, and an improve birthday song for Vico! It seemed like our whole group took up half the restaurant, with all the volunteers, students, and professors. We got shushed a couple times by some of the waitresses because we got a little bit too loud with our laughing and such, but that's okay, we had a good reason: it was our last night!
I don't know how many pictures I took with people, but it seemed like we took pictures non stop for maybe an hour. Everyone wanted to get pictures with every single person. But as the dinner was coming to an end, and we exhausted our allowed time at this restaurant, everyone was starting to get more emotional and sentimental. People were starting to leave, and the last hugs and goodbyes were going around. It is amazing how close everyone has become, only in this short month.
 But some of us still had time and wanted to hang out, so Jack suggested that we go to KTV, which is karaoke! It is really really popular here, and something we had to do before leaving.

OOooohhh Vico...

A picture with the USA crowd! Richard and Kim (University of Illinois)
Some of the student volunteers...and then there's Baker. Thanks for all of your help!
This girls, Kim (USA) and Jiling (China) are so amazing! Roomies for the past couple days, and part of our group research project! The picture on the right is our last "morning exercise" that we did routinely in Sitou.  
Jack! Words can not express how thankful I am for all your hard work coordinating this program!
I've never been to a KTV (karaoke) place before! I was amazed at how popular it is here; as common as going to a movie! In the states, I can't even remember seeing a karaoke place in my town. but it was a cool experience. Because of our large group, we got one of the bigger rooms. There was a free small food buffet outside our room, so we of course had a few snacks. It was fun to see some of us get really into the song! The singing styles of some people were... well, interesting to say the least! haha :) I was surprised that they had a large selection of english songs as well! But... pretty much all of the song were from the 90's so I didn't really know a lot of them! Except we did sing the Call Me Maybe song (or Call Me Baby, as Baker calls it), which got everyone yelling at the tv. We were out until 3:30 in the morning, so everyone was really tired afterward. Some of us had flights before noon so sleep was needed.
After some very final sad goodbyes, we all walked slowly back to the dorm. We were trying to extend the every moment we had together before some of us had to go. So sad, but we all vowed that we would someday meet up again. A reunion is coming! Can't wait to see everyone again!

The KTV room with everyone ready to sing their hearts out!

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