Hello to all from Changzhou China! My adventure to China so far has been... intersting, and amazing! My 14 hour flight from San Fran to Hong Kong went very well. I was able to sleep most of the way there. The Hong Kong airport was jam packed to we ended up de-boarding the plain outside and then standing there for 45 minutes waiting for a bus to come and get us, that is where the adventure began! I took a shuttle to the YMCA international house where the rest of my group had been staying the previous days.
The following morning I my group (5 girls) and I took a train from Hong Kong to Gaungzhou which was about 2 hours. We got all of our luggage (3 bags each) and found Mr. Wu who had been waiting there for us. Mr. Wu does not speak hardly any english so we just followed him around. We took all our luggage through the crazy packed train station and then loaded it in a van. Katherine and I went in the van to take the luggage to the other station, while Mr. Wu went with the rest of the girls on the metro. So we got to the station with all our luggage and just had to wait for our group. When they finally arrived we then took all our luggage to the train shipping center. Now remember that we are doing all of this in the hot humid heat among thousands of Chinese people STARING at us! They seriously are so funny. They just stare and don't really care. Well they also like to just shout HELLO and I LOVE YOU! It's really funny. Okay so after we got all of our luggage taken care of we made our way through the station following Mr. Wu to find our next train to ride. The process from one station to the next and transporting the luggage was about 3 hours. I am so lucky that the girls were so positive and williing to do anything, because it was extremely hot and very tiring, but exciting at the same time!!!
So the next train ride to Shang hai was 20 hours. We left at 2 PM and arrive at 930 the next morning which was monday morning. It was a really good ride. It is fun to see all the scenery in China, it is so beautiful! It was all new territory to me since I have never been to this side of China. Mr. Wu bought us some food on the train and it was okay. I could some of it, but the hardest part was trying to eat the spicy noodles for breakfeast?! I mean, who does that? The other girls like it though! Okay, so we arrived in Shang hai and then went to the place where our luggage would arrive. Our luggage came and then we waited for the bus from the school to come and pick us up...... we waited...... and waited..... and waited....... 6 hours! I cannot describe how happy we were once it came. We had been sitting outside putting on a show for the Chinese people and were ready to get out of there. We were on the bus for about 3 hours, some of us sleeping because we were so worn out. The bus stopped and Mr. Wu yelled " Let's eata!". We were so nasty and smellly at this point that we did not really want to go into this Chinese restaraunt, but we did anyway. They had a really nice meal set up for us with some of the faculty from the school. The first thing they offered us was beer!! It was so funny because we refused it and they could not believe it! They were like, " first try first try! just one!" and we were all laughing so hard because they would not take no. Finally after a while they gave up, and gave us orange juice, hahaha so funny! The meal was really good. Lots of spicy meat, and lots of vegetables. I didn't eat much of it, silly picky me, but I am determined to try lot's of the food!!
Okay, so we finally arrived at our school at about 9 PM. We were expecting not very nice room, just simple rooms and stuff to get by with. Well, we were wrong. They gave us each our own seperate apartment rooms and they are way nice!! We have brand new refridgerators and t.v.s and furnitures. The only downer is that the bed is HARD. It is just wood with a thin cotton pad on it, but the really cute comfortors make up for it I guess. :) So we were all thrilled to get our own rooms. They have nice air conditioning to! Amazing!!!
Well, this is getting to be really long so I will post later more about the school we are at. This week I am training the teachers to be the best english teachers ever! We will start teaching next monday. We are so excited and ready! The kids will not come to the school until sunday so we are excited for that too. I hope that all is well back in America, I will admit that i miss it already! I love it here in China though, I love the people and getting to know the funny culture here. I am looking forward to a crazy, fun, learning filled semester ahead of me!!
your chinese friend- Carly Jo