Even until a few weeks ago, I was wondering how I’d get through the grueling eight-week Duke Study in China language program; somehow it’s already over. After our final exams yesterday, we had our closing ceremony with teachers, language partners, host families, and fellow students. Everything went swimmingly until a picture slideshow presentation accompanied by emotional Chinese pop music resulted in an unexpected intense waterworks show, mostly by the teachers. 我会想念你们!
Things I won’t miss (in no particular order):
- memorizing characters at 6:30 a.m.
- soup in plastic bags
- just about everything related to transportation
- everyone assuming I’m a deaf/retarded local
- public urination (children and drunk businessmen)
- shoddy manufacturing
- government censorship
- 1 RMB cent coins (approx. $.0015) that nobody accepts
- host parents
- jiaozi stands
- Peking duck
- Wu taitai
- KTV (karaoke)
- artificial currency devaluation
- recap sessions
- Gao mama’s tomato-egg-pea-thing
- blueberry creamsicles
- unbelievably cute dogs
- icy naengmyeon noodles
- Korean barbeque
- good coffee
- conglomerate-owned department stores
- street food
- the renovated Gwanghwamun Plaza
- (Unfortunately, life will now be ten times more expensive.)
DSIC, 再见! Thanks for a great eight weeks!
And thanks again to the Light Fellowship at Yale for providing the support and resources that made possible my study in China this summer!