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Month: August 2015

Great City, Amazing People…and American Horror Story

During my last few nights in Beijing, I managed to find a Chinese website to watch American Horror Story on and then promptly watched and finished the fourth season (this story is relevant, I promise). As I watched episode after episode, I noticed something wonderful; I could read most of the Chinese subtitles! Having learned

Eating My Way Through China

As my study abroad time wraps up, I want to return to the one thing I’ve always looked forward to during my time in Beijing: food. Food is very important in Chinese culture and each region has its own flavor and specialty dishes. For the most part, I’ve had Chinese food here but I’ve also

Until Next Time…

It’s hard to believe just how quickly these past eight weeks have passed by. When we first arrived, we were bright-eyed bushy-tailed as we struggled to assimilate into the completely new environment. Yet as the weeks went on, we became more accustomed to the way things were and our days felt normal and comfortable. Having

Soothing End

Blind persons give you a Chinese massage in 盲人按摩.  While I heard about this practice, I never had the time to investigate. Time not spent learning about the intricacies of the Chinese language and economy was used to explore Beijing with my friends. No one seemed interested enough in the massage to find them. So on the

Goodbye, Beijing!

As I begin to pack up my room, the feeling is definitely bittersweet. On the one hand, I can’t wait to get back to the States and binge-watch Suits, but on the other hand, I feel like there’s so much more left to explore in Beijing! Here’s some final thoughts on these two short months. Things

Yellow Mountain in a Day

The Wanxiang program goes to Hangzhou directly after getting back from Xi’an. We’ve been here for a week. The classes are a different topic each day, each with a different focus on energy supply and development in China. We were also assigned “ambassadors” who are local students who speak English pretty well. They have been

Train Rides & Bike Rides

The first round of classes are over now, and we’re 3.5 weeks into the program. Time for a break, and about two-thirds of the class has decided to take a trip to Xi’an to see the Terra Cotta warriors. We’ve been booked on an overnight train that will get us there by 9 am the

Acupuncture and Bloodletting, Oh My!

There’s no fear of needles in my Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) class.  For the last two weeks (and the next two weeks), I have been learning about the theories and practices of TCM. Aside from lecture, there have been several field trips to aid our learning. In the first week, the class visited the TCM

Lose Yourself to Dance

During the Long Weekend, which is a break between the two, four-week sessions of classes on this program, my group chose to go to the Yellow Mountains and other rural villages in the area. The Yellow Mountains, or 黄山 in Chinese, which are located in southern China, are the source of this magnificent paintings of

Oh, you speak Chinese?

It’s the question everyone asks you here, and it has dramatically raised my awareness as to the relationship race has within my identity. In America, frankly, mostly everyone looks like me, belongs to my culture and speaks English. At Northwestern, this was not the case since it has a wonderfully diverse community full of many