I'm going to China, I'm going to China, I'm going to China

Monday, May 17, 2010

I don't think I've told you that I'm going to China yet, but I am! I am excited beyond belief that I get to go to a country with so much history and culture. I want to go everywhere I can in the world. I want to see people where they live. I want to read about it and then GO there. I want to know what people are like. I want to see government. I want to see architecture. AND I GET TO!! Oh I am counting down the days. I want to see the world, and I am going to. I'm going to Tibet. I get to stay in a monastery. I am going to see the terra cotta soldiers. Go to Beijing. Go to the Forbidden City. This is going to be amazing.

I am avoiding the thought that I have to learn Mandarin. Or remember names that all sound the same to my ignorant Western ears.

I have few things that I really really want to do. I've learned a lot in the last few years. I know what's important to me and my life. I want to graduate from college. I want to get married. I want to have kids- my own or adopted. I want to travel as extensively as I can. I want to go to seminary and graduate. I want to find a job that fulfills my calling. I want to keep good friends, family and have a good life. That's it. China is part of my plan and I can't wait to go. I will do it. I want to do it all, God willing.

This is the official summary of what we will be doing in China: Though this study tour to China, students will experience the world's most populous country- a country with the world's fastest growing economy, a fascinating 5000-year history, and one of the few remaining Communist-controlled governments. We begin in Shanghai, China's gateway to the Pacific, visiting the famous Yuyuan Gardens, the Shanghai museum and the Bund (old foreign sector). From the bustling megalopolis, students will then venture into the Yunnan province where they will visit the city of Dali. As ethnic minorities make up 50% of the population, this will allow the students to see another side of China. Visits will include Cangshan Mountain, the Three Pagodas and the Dali Library. after this experience, we will fly to Chengdu, capital of Sichuan Province in China's interior. In Chengdu, students will visit the home of Dufu, one of China's famous poets, and the Panda Bear Research Base. Students will also have the opportunity to visit with students from a local high school and spend the night with a Chinese family. From there the group will travel to Mt. Emei, a famous Buddhist retreat where they will stay in a Buddhist monastery on the mountain. From Chengdu we will head to Lhasa, the capital of Tibet, where we will visit religious sites, including the Potala Palace (the holiest temple of Tibetan Buddhism and the traditional home of the Dalai Lama), Drepung Monastery and Jokhang Temple (where Tibetan Buddhist monks still train and practice their religion). Next, we will stop over in Xian to view the famous terra cotta warriors before heading to Beijing, China's capital to visit the area's most important sites- Tiananmen Square, the Forbidden City, the Olympic sites and, of course, the Great Wall.


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