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A New Year, A New City… SHANGHAI!!

March 2nd, 2013 arreta14

Yup! Janterm has officially ended and I have successfully moved my three enormous bags of luggage into my new room at Donghua University in SHANGHAI!! Because I’m currently living in Shanghai, the new word for this post is a phrase in Shanghai’s dialect. The phrase is 侬好 (pronounced “Nong Huo”). This is the typical way of greeting someone speaking Shanghainese.

Well Janterm ended the same way as last semester. We had our long final exam and then CET held a banquet at a local hotel. We ate, casually spoke Chinese with our teachers and roommates, received diplomas for completing our Janterm Semester and had a countdown to the end of the program after which we could finally speak English.

Finally our language pledge is finished! But I gotta tell you, it was harder than you would expect to go back to speaking English

After our countdown, we all took pictures with our professors…

This is Gao Lao Shi. She was my 1-on-2 professor for both Fall and Janterm

Chen Lao Shi. One of my professors from Fall semester. We're about to dance to Gangnam Style

Jiang Lao Shi. The head professor of my 260 class for Fall semester.

Bai Lao Shi. My 1-on-1 professor from Fall semester and Janterm. I don't know what she's pointing at

Peng Lao Shi. My advisor for my independent research and my head professor for Janterm.

Qi lao shi. One of my Janterm professors

Yang Hui. One of the two office workers at CET.

I could keep going on and on with pictures of all of my professors, advisors, the office workers at CET, etc., but I think that might get a little excessive. All I can say is that I loved each and every one of my professors and all the people involved in the CET program.

All the Holy Cross students from Janterm with our diplomas

After the end of Janterm, a few of my friends and I tried to go to Harbin (a city in Northern China famous for having a winter festival in which they build enormous sculptures of ice) for Winter break. Unfortunately, because it’s so close to Chinese New Year, the only train tickets we could find were 18 hour train tickets, and we wouldn’t even have seats… yeah 18 hours standing… needless to say we decided to stay in Beijing.

We spent most of our winter break trying to see as many famous sites around Beijing as we could. Because everyone in Beijing was gearing up for, and eventually celebrating Chinese New Year, there was a ton of exciting things going on around the city. However, at the same time, once the celebrations started, almost every shop, store, restaurant shut down in the afternoon. It was a little inconvenient when I went to get dinner, but being in Beijing for Chinese New Year was truly an unforgettable experience.

Tiananmen Square. I've been here before. The building in front is The Monument to the People's Heroes. Behind is Mao Ze Dong's mausoleum (which I had never seen before). It was so cool to see Chairman Mao, but security there is tight. They would not let me enter the building with a camera

The Beijing Zoo. I've only ever seen Pandas here, I had no idea there was more

They have white tigers here! Before anyone gets worried, the tigers and big cats are only kept in these smaller pens because it gets really cold in Beijing in the Winter. They do have bigger enclosures for the Summer.

Hippo with a baby hippo!

Of course during Chinese New Year you would expect fireworks, but I would never imagine it would be like this. They are huge, loud and every block of every street (almost) sets up their own. I swear sometimes it's so loud that I feel like I am in a war zone.

One of the big festivals at Di Tan for Chinese New Year. These festivals are a ton of fun, but by mid day, the parks are packed with crowds

The Temple of Heaven! The day I came here, there was a huge reenactment of how, in ancient times, Chinese Emperors would come to the temple to pray.

Last day in Beijing. I spent it thoroughly exploring Olympic Park (i.e. The Bird's Nest, The Cube)

A lot of the inside of the Cube has been converted into an indoor water park. Awesome. Unfortunately I did not have time to go swimming that day 🙁

Well I didn’t quite get to Shanghai yet… that’ll be covered in the next post.

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Andrew Retallick '14

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