Reflections on My Trip to China

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Wow, what an amazing trip.  I didn’t know what to expect.  It was life changing to see how another culture, so different than my own, lives, breathes, survives and thrives.  I came away appreciating all of our differences, however, still coming back to this very true anthem:  “We are all more alike than we are different.”

  • Chinese people go to work, take care of their families, go to church or temple, celebrate holidays, buy homes (or more likely an apartment), get together with friends, shop, etc.
  • There are McDonalds, Burger Kings, Pizza Huts, in all of the big cities and I even saw a Hooters in Beijing.
  • The children were all so well dressed and wearing bright colors, no matter what their economic circumstances were.
  • The people loved to have their photos taken (at least most of them did), and they loved to take photos of Americans/Europeans.
  • There are so many modern, big cities, yet there are still some very antiquated systems in place.
    • Bathrooms for women #1 on the list.
    • Young children from the country don’t wear diapers, the children have a slit in their clothing there, and I guess where and whenever it comes, it comes.
    • Diet soda was hard to find, however regular soda was widely available.
    • On the Yangtze River, women were washing out clothes by the river bank.
    • Clothes dryers are non-existent in homes, everyone hangs out their clothes to dry.
    • Boys are still widely favored over girls, in fact one tour guide told us to “pray for boys.”

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The airports were all very clean and very modern.  Plus the luggage carts were FREE at every airport in China.  That was awesome.  Equally awesome was the fact that on every fight we took within China (three total, averaging about 90 minutes each), we were served a meal — not something palatable to me, but a meal just the same.

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Seeing and walking on the Great Wall was a dream of a lifetime.  I never thought I would travel to such a far away place. The incline on the wall was very steep, and not many of the tourist attractions were handicap friendly.  I am sure China will catch up on issues like that.

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This little guy was selling his oranges, and even boarded our bus to make it convenient to buy them.  China has a capitalist economy disguised within the realms of socialism and communism.  Each citizen is responsible for finding his or her own job and place to live, and the success or failure of its citizen is largely left up to him or her.  The government no longer provides a free apartment to its residents.

 

 

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Tiananmen Square in Beijing.  Men retire at the age of 60, and women at the age of 55.  They spend their days going to the park and exercising.  Above is a photograph of a Chinese trio, and the man had just taken my photo, and then the ladies wanted a photo with me….IMG_9307LR

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I love the red Chinese lantern everywhere.  Very cool.

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One of the many Buddhist temples we visited.

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Here is a lady praying to Buddha.  Every culture has their own religion and religious beliefs.  We even witnessed a holy  day at one of the Buddhist Temples in Shanghai.  The event was awesome to witness.  I’ll save that for another post.IMG_9984LRThe food was very different.  Our meals were all very normal stuff that we are used to eating, chicken, beef, pork, rice and vegetables (and Peking duck one night).  As you see at this food stand, they cook chickens a little differently than we do, and right next to the chickens is a pig’s head.  Not sure how that’s cooked.

I am feeling like myself again, past the jet lag, and gearing up for Thanksgiving and Christmas.

Since Thanksgiving is so late this year, I feel we’ve lost a week until Christmas, so I put up my tree yesterday, and am busy decorating…

 

This entry was posted in Portfolio, Travel.

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