This past week of classes has been great. Class seemed to go by very quickly and my Chinese skills have noticeably improved. The workload has been the perfect amount, and it prepared us for class, but did not distract us from our cultural activities. On one of these activities last week, we went up into the Pearl Tower, a famous sky scraper in Shanghai. Being so high up was really cool because we could see all 360 degrees of the Shanghai skyline.
This weekend we went to Beijing. The trip was a lot of fun, although very hot, and my highlight of it was talking to a local Beijing person. She noticed me speaking English and came over to investigate why a Chinese-looking person spoke English like an American. What ensued was a good ten minute conversation between us in Chinese about my life and what I thought about China. Being able to communicate with this local reminded me of why I study Chinese. It’s a great feeling one gets when they are actually understood in one of world’s hardest languages.
-The above post was contributed by Lily Maris, who studied abroad with ISA High School in Shanghai, China in 2014.