Edit Blog Post
Published: August 21st 2016
Me and Princess
With Princess at Kings Dominion (amusement park)
It's currently Monday, China time and I'm excited to post my second blog. As I get ready for my first day of orientation, it's time to reflect on my past week and it's been a hectic one. As mentioned before, last Sunday was my last time seeing most of my family and friends. I was able to catch up with a few more people before I left on Wednesday. As you can see from the pictures, I had a lively time Sunday afternoon at Kings Dominion with my sister Char aka Princess and my niece Zaniah. The next couple of days I saw other close family friends for the last time. I ate Maryland blue crabs with Auntie Toya, went to a Mexican restaurant in D.C with the Halls, saw my God family, and lastly had a small send off with no other than the Tans, Aunt Margaret, Princess, and my family. On Wednesday I officially said goodbye to the Washington D.C area and my parents as I traveled from Union Station in D.C all the way to Atlanta on a 15hr bus ride. I know.............fun. I had a great time spending time with my Aunt Lorraine, Uncle Mike, (my dad's
Spending time with one of my nieces at an amusement park.
sister and brother in law) and two cousins who are just too adorable. Jody met me at my Aunt's house Thursday evening, and Friday morning we were off to China. I had a couple of fun adventures in the airport, and by fun I mean unnecessary encounters. Apparently my luggage scale must be broken because one of my suitcases were 8lbs over weight. I was told to either pay $100 or figure out a way to distribute weight between three bags. I think you can guess which option I chose. After panicking about a fee I ended up not having to pay despite still being overweight, the TSA decided to pat me down because my bag kept alarming the machine. Had to swallow my pride and let a stranger touch my hair. Nothing was found. (I had this same problem in China later but luckily I didn't have to experience another very uncomfortable body search). I still have no idea what was throwing the machine off. After having an adventure with the TSA, Jody and I almost missed our flight because of this. We barely made it but luckily we persevered. Our layover in Seattle was fine. Nothing particularly interesting
Washington D.C/Mexican food
Spending time with some of my favorite people, the Halls. One of my last days before I leave and my last time eating out in D.C
happened. After a 4hr layover, Jody and I boarded China's Hainan Airlines for an 11hr flight to Beijing. I was able to sleep for the majority of the ride which sounds nice but now I'm still on American time while Jody is sleeping in China like a baby. When we arrived in Beijing we were given a free hotel accommodation at a Best Western near the airport since the stop in Beijing was a 15hr layover. A Chinese biker gang who flew in with us from Seattle befriended us. They looked super scary and intimidating but they were as sweet as teddy bears. They just returned from riding Route 66 in the States. Sunday morning, we departed from Beijing and finally reached the wonderful city of Changsha.
After gathering all of the volunteer teachers together, we drove into the city and checked into the hotel we'll be having our training sessions at for the next month. Our location is great as we're right downtown and everything is within walking distance. After texting each for the past couple of weeks, us volunteers finally got to meet one another. Everyone is very nice and friendly and I'm excited to make new
Going away party
Celebrating going away to China with some of my closest family and friends. My sister Amber and niece McKayla. Princess, and my other niece Zaniah. Aunt Margaret, Aunt Lorraine, Whitney, and Khari. I had a great time trying delicious desserts. I'm going to miss you all!
long lasting friendships. After wondering around downtown for a bit, while attracting stares left and right, the field director Jay and his assistant Papaya took us all out to dinner where we tried Hunan cuisine for the first time. Lots of spicy food. Some people wanted to check out the bar scene, but given the fact that we were all still exhausted we decided to settle for a walk in the park instead. This gigantic park just happens to be right next to our hotel. In my experience being in China before, parks are not necessarily quite serene places with beautiful scenery. While they are maintained nicely and filled with nature, Marty's Park in downtown Changsha was just the same as other parks I've visited in the past in China. They are not parks at all, in fact there minus-well be called a mini carnival. There were groups of dancers all over the park. Some salsa dancing, some doing the cha cha, others following along to an upbeat dance instructor. Besides the millions of simultaneous dance parties occurring, there were carnival games, toys to buy, popcorn, ice cream, and sausage to eat, a huge lake where families can go paddle
Going away party
Me taking the first bite of some amazing bread pudding.
boating, and to top it all off, an amusement park. That's right, you heard right. In the middle of a public park were thrill rides and roller coasters. I have never seen anything quite like this. We were all too tired to get on any rides, but for anyone who knows me, surely it won't be long before I get on every single ride this park has to offer. Although I haven't been there personally, through google maps I was able to find out that my apartment is no more than ten minutes from this amazing, lively spot. Well tomorrow's the first day and it will be very busy. Wish me luck and I'll be back again with more updates. Please check out the pictures. Feel free to leave questions and comments and I will get back with you as soon as possible. Bye bye.
Tot: 0.509s; Tpl: 0.017s; cc: 12; qc: 51; dbt: 0.0095s; 1; m:saturn w:www (126.96.36.199); sld: 1;
; mem: 1.4mb