Stepping off the plane it felt like I entered into a new world! I was immediately excited to see and experience China for the first time. It has been interesting (especially the first day) to be fully immersed in the Chinese culture. It was neat looking at the street and building signs, noticing immediate differences in roadways, various architectures and the greenery for the first time. On the way to the Nanjing University of Post and Telecommunications one of my first observations was all the nature and greenery that has been planted. China is a beautiful country filled with flowers alongside highways and various types of trees and shrubs lining the way. These observations make me think. I always remind myself, it is the small things in life we must take a moment to enjoy. Sometimes it is so easy just to overlook and we should take more time to appreciate those things.
I enjoyed the day trips we took helped give me a better glance and appreciation of the history and culture China proudly presents. One of my favorite aspects so far is just observing people in their daily lives in China. It is one thing to read about a culture but it is even better to experience different cultures first hand and see for yourself. The past few days I have been observing street vendors and various shops. The differences in our cultures are amazing and what is normal to them is so fascinating to me. The picture below with the chickens in a cage on a motorcycle was so out of the ordinary to me but so normal to the natives. From this picture, I learned chickens like watermelon, who knew?!
Overall, being able to step out of your comfort zone and try something new is the essence of this program. It is hard to even put into words this experience so far! I would describe it as: once in a life time adventure! Not only are we exploring the areas and culture around Nanjing but, we have the opportunity to work with students from India as well and learn about their culture too! So far this has been an awesome experience!