I know I have been lacking on the blog lately, but here is my update for the last couple of days. We have been EXTREMELY busy, but I love it. I am definitely not ready to go home at all. All in all, China is awesome.
We had our graduation from SIAS. It was extremely informal and a lot of fun, kind of sad though. We have really grown close to our Chinese guides. They have basically lived with us for the past month. On our last night there, we of course had to go to the night market. We were sitting around drinking beer and just talking. We were going to play some games as usual, but then Bruce said, “We should just talk, we will probably never see each other again in our lives.” That is when reality really kicked in for me. Our new friends live halfway across the world, and that was our last night with them.
It really is an experience of a lifetime, but it coming to an end way too quickly. When we first showed up, we were thinking that this month would go on forever, but it hasn’t. It has flown by.
After we had all said our goodbyes, we headed out of town and went to the Longmen Grottoes. It is the home of 100,000 Buddhas carved into the side of a mountain, of varying sizes of course. Some of them were a few inches tall and the biggest one was hundreds of feet tall. They were interesting, but it was really hot, and we had a train to catch, so we didn’t stay long. After that we had to go to the train station. We have 6 people and 1 guide, so the taxi situation is interesting now.
The first group left and headed to the station, but we were stuck there trying to wave down taxis, but there were absolutely none in the area. We ended up having to take a bus, which took us way out of the way, then we had to take a taxi back to the station. Ohh and by the way, none of us having working phones. It took us about an hour to complete the 10 minute drive. They were sitting around wondering if our car had gotten a flat tire, or just spontaneously combusted, but it was neither.
We took the high speed train, which was an experience in itself and we ended up in Xi’an. That is where we are now. We officially have 3 days left in China and then we are headed back to the states. They took us to a nice restaurant tonight and it was weird because we were complaining about how nice it is. We realize that when we get back, we can have all of our luxuries. We really have embraced the culture. We were complaining because our dishes were clean, they food was too American, they had normal toilets in the bathrooms, not just wholes in the ground, and that there were more foreigners in the restaurant than Asians.
The next few days we have a lot of sightseeing to do, so I will try to keep you all updated, but no guarantees. If not, I’ll just tell you about it first hand when I get back.