Juggling hats followed by a girl pyramid
Last Wednesday we went to see an acrobat show. Unfortunately our schedule was wrong. It told us to catch the bus at the wrong place, so we were late and traffic in Beijing was relentless as always. We missed a little of the show. I think we only missed two or three acts though.
The show was about an hour long and it was the most incredible acrobat show I’ve ever seen. The acts were unbelievable. I liked the male acts more than the girls though. They had girls spinning blankets on their feet, guys juggling hats while doing flips, about a dozen girls in a pyramid riding around on a single bike, and much more.
My favorite was the motorcycle act that they do at every circus where they have a metal sphere and they see how many motorcyclists they can fit in it. There were eight at one time for a little, which was crazy. It was a really entertaining show; it was also funny at times. It is obvious that the Chinese acrobats train for a long time to be able to perfect these tricks, possibly even their whole lives. If I had time before I left this is definitely something I would want to see again.
The Great Wall
On Saturday we went to the Great Wall. I was more excited about this than I was about anything else on the trip. The great wall was really cool. I was able to walk on it and write my name on it and they have a lot of nice souvenir shops at which we could bargain. The only downside was that it rained.
Actually it poured, and there was some thunder and lightning. Luckily the thunder and lightning didn’t start until after we got back to the dorms. I rode the cable car up and down instead of walking because I didn’t want to walk in the rain. I’m glad I took the car, it wasn’t expensive and it was fun. I wish the view would have been better but it was hard to see anything due to the fog.
The wall was so high up that we were actually in a cloud. I was able to buy some nice things for myself and people back at home. Since it was raining I didn’t want to take out my camera so I don’t have any pictures but I included a picture of a gift I bought there with a picture of the Great Wall made of thread.
Our last ethnic meal
We went on our last ethnic meal this week. For the meal we had to ask our teachers out to lunch and pay for them (we were later refunded by Dr. Jing Luo). I really liked this dinner, because it gave us time to get to know our teachers outside of the classroom and thank them for all they have taught us during these four weeks.
My class actually did lunch instead of dinner. It was a really good lunch; we got so much food. I wish I would have taken my camera with me so that I would have been able to take a picture of the table. As the trip winds down to the end I’m getting really excited to go home but also sad to leave.
I’m really realizing what a great opportunity this was, and that it’s something I may never have the chance to do again. I’m really hoping that one day I can study abroad again; maybe another China or somewhere else. Either way, this trip has made me excited to take on these opportunities and definitely given me a good feeling about taking a risk and getting me out of my comfort zone.
Shopping ... a lot of shopping
I have done a lot of shopping while I have been here. The shopping is very different than it is in America. In the little souvenir shops they all pretty much sell the same things, which is how souvenir shops are all over the world. But the bargaining is something new. I have been to Tijuana before which is also a bargain market, but it was different than China.
Here in China they say that you should bargain off 90 percent off the original price which amazes me. I like bargaining, I think it is a fun experience; I always used to get embarrassed by my dad because that is how he likes to shop, but now I can see the fun in it. The only thing I don’t like is that it is very hard to find anything real (jewelry, clothes, purses and other leather products etc.) I personally don’t like shopping so it definitely makes it a more bearable experience when you are able to bargain with people and set your own price.
In conclusion ...
After four weeks in Beijing I have become much more accustomed the way of life here. I have learned how to communicate with people, even when you don’t speak the same language. I have learned to get around in an unfamiliar country, and I have also learned to adapt to new rules and regulations. I feel like I am much more prepared for challenges in my future after taking on such an adventure.
This was one of the best experiences of my life and I’m so thankful that I was able to do it. I am really going to miss it here although I am excited to go home. I hope I am still able to continue learning the language at the pace I am now so that I don’t lose it. I have met a lot of people here and made a lot of friends. I would recommend this trip to anyone who is even slightly interested. I hope to be able to participate in such a thing again sometime in my life.
— Jeanine DelSordo, finance and economics major