After getting up early to head to the airport I was able to reflect a little on the trip. This trip has been very eye opening and eventful! I realized how important it is to keep an open mind when traveling because you never know what you may encounter. I was trust into all sorts of experiences. (I have to say my public speaking has improved!) All the sights we have seen and places we have traveled have shown me the vast history of the country and the flourishing culture. One day I hope to be able to share my findings with my students.

Among some of the other opportunities I really enjoyed, was meeting our language partners and developing friendships. After sharing our experiences and lifestyles we found we have a lot in common. It was good to see those similarities, as it makes the world seem more connected. Their perspectives on government, life, and relationships was interesting to hear. It helps me put myself in their shoes and try to see things a different way, especially political rules and cultural habits. 

Learning the culture and the language posed a great opportunity for me. Being submerged in it made it easier to remember everything and made the content even more current and applicable. I highly suggest, if you are trying to learn a new language, that you go to a country that speaks the language. I think if I stayed longer my Chinese would be pretty good! 

I've experienced some delicious food, made many new friends, been exposed to some traditions, traveled to several sites, and been a part of a pilot program dedicated to helping future students gain opportunities like I had here in Chongqing! I was very honored to be a part of such an important trip. I think it's valuable to step outside your comfort zone and experience new things and this trip provided me with numerous chances to do so. It gives me a better understanding of the world and shows me the importance of the events of the past and future. 

During the flight it was weird to hear so much English, and eat more "normal food!" I am slowly being weened back into American food and ways. I have already noticed many differences and I'm sure in the next month or so I will come across a lot as I readjust. It feels great to be home to see my family and friends and I'm already in contact with many of my friends from China. :) 


06/09/2013 4:02am

Shannon! Your blog is so engaging! Thank you for sharing your adventure.


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