Took a day off from blogging yesterday, but here’s a quick recap – enjoy!

Originally posted 20/06/14 on TravelPod.

During the last 2 days, the students have been attending classes – everything from Chinese, Art and Martial Arts to Geography, History, and Phys. Ed (ping-pong). In each class, the students were given the opportunity to converse & interact with Chinese students. It was a pleasure to watch them forge friendships through laughter. Our students were true Canadian ambassadors – they showed a great amount of maturity & poise as they were once again showered with gifts, adoration, and numerous students clamoring for signatures, email addresses, and pictures.

Today we found ourselves on a tour of the student dorms. Furnishings are very sparse, mattresses were non-existent, and only small signs of students personalizing rooms. Laundry appeared to be done by hand while communal showers are the norm. It definitely made both the teachers and students feel sympathy for our Chinese friends. Moreover, the students realized just how fortunate and lucky they were to be children living in Canada.

After our short tour and a brief lunch, we traveled back into Luoyang to visit the Longmen Grottoes, a series of small caves chiseled out of the side of a mountain. Each hole contained a small stone statue of Buddha, with various writings distributed in between. The scene was something right out of an Indian Jones movie. It was very impressive.

We were all really happy to make it back to campus tonight. Temperatures were hovering around 40 degrees Celsius – and no wind.

At least the heat helps with my China diet – even if most of it is sweat. It’s a good sweat though, as we are walking or climbing stairs every day. Also, I think my stomach may finally be adjusting to the diet we’ve had here, which certainly is different from what we have in Canada. To help with internal plumbing though, I’ve even had to resort to having my first cup of coffee ever. It has a terrible aftertaste. And I know that many of you would think that I should be drinking tea, but I find that it just tastes like hot water. Guess I overload my tea with too much milk & sugar at home.

We’re now past the halfway point in the trip. Things have moved faster than I thought. I wonder what the rest of the trip has in store….