July 12

A Summer in China

20160713-100457-293blbq.jpgNote: My intention was to have photos to share also but haven’t yet found a way to do this in a resolution that is ok with the sketchy internet connections. This is us against the Hong Kong skyline. Will update with better photos when possible…

Jim has been in China since June 6. He is doing two of the things he loves – teaching hockey and soaking up a new culture. I joined Jim on July 10th and decided to use my blog to document what we are experiencing for our own record, and to share what we are learning for those interested. In my blog I generally post my thoughts about ideas I am playing with as an educator. As we travel we are learning so much and are so fascinated with the cultural similarities and differences between where we are from and the places we are visiting that I wanted to document the ideas we are playing with as learners.

I absolutely love travelling with Jim. He is endlessly curious and fearless in exploring new places and in connecting with strangers even though they don’t speak the same language. He is quickly learning Mandarin and at this point can generally get what we need. Ok, there was the time he ordered Chinese dumplings and we got ice tea. The ice tea was quite tasty really :-). Didn’t go that well with the pijiu though…

Jim works most days and I spend the time when he is working exploring the streets (and relaxing, reading, writing, and attempting to learn Mandarin in our hotel :-). When wandering on my own I am reluctant to communicate with people. I will smile as I pass by but find that people only occasionally smile back (ok, there were the guys yesterday who stopped to shake my hand but otherwise…). If I judged the friendliness of a place based on this, I would believe that people are generally unfriendly. What fascinates me is that when Jim and I explore places together his knack for connecting with people draws them in and we find out that they are incredibly friendly and generous. I am learning…

Jim spent a month in Shanghai, now he is running week long hockey schools in different cities across China. The first city was Shenzhen and I joined him there at the end of the week. Jim and a friend picked me up from the airport in Hong Kong on July 10th. I landed at 6:30 am and then we wandered around Hong Kong and rode the rapid transit to get a taste of the city. It was relatively quiet but we were wandering between 7 and 9 am – from what I hear, Hong Kong (along with most of China?) has a night culture. It would be so cool to see Hong Kong at night – next time :-). We then took a train to Shenzhen for his last night in that city.

I had a brief taste of Shenzhen. My first impression based on the place we stayed is that it is a very modern and young culture. In the evening the streets were busy with young people. We had a delicious dinner and then sat in an outdoor cafe having a few drinks while listening to kids performing on an outdoor stage. Shortly after the concert there were a couple of claps of thunder and then an amazing rain storm. The next morning we were off to Chongqing…

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Posted July 12, 2016 by Anita in category Travel

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