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Evaluating the enemy and ammunition.

Evaluating the enemy and ammunition.

I yelled, “I am your boss! You can't throw snow balls at me!” as I threw one at Jing.

Laughing, he scooped up a large ball with his bare hands and threw it hard, hitting me in the head. I firmed another snowball. “That's it, I'm giving you a lousy teaching assignment next semester!”

On my way into the office, seeing all that virgin snow, the thought of closing myself off in my office appalled me. I wanted to play. Outside.

It wasn't easy to convince the students to come out to play in the snow. Sam was too busy looking at his teaching evaluations to hear me properly. Xiaofeng just laughed. Laura explained that her gloves were thin, Jing had to teach in half an hour, Enoch was holding office hours, and Matteo had papers to grade.

But Laura borrowed a pair of thicker gloves and helped me round up a few more, and Jing realized that he could hang out with us for twenty minutes. Yuanyuan agreed to play in the snow in English rather than stay inside and have me help her with her English pronunciation. Sebastian and Giovanni joined us as well, as did Adam.

I led them outside into the deep snow. “So what should we do? Build a snowman?”

I bent down to scoop some snow together for the body and found that I was forming a snowball instead. I stood up and threw it at Laura.

One of Jing's snowballs broke my glasses, and the fight triggered a bad asthma episode.

As we walked back inside, goofy smiles on our faces, my broken glasses in my pocket, Sebastian said, “That was fun. We should do this every morning.”

We all nodded enthusiastically.