Posted by: ngarcia3 | May 31, 2010

Ni hao!

You know how babies can find everything so entertaining and it’s only because everything is new to them? That’s exactly how I feel in China. Everything is so exciting, entertaining, and I just want to learn more.

We are on such a busy schedule that it is so hard to find time to rest. I don’t think Chinese people know what rest is. They remind me of the Energizer bunny (they just keep going and going).

Today was our first day of class. Our day started off by two welcoming ceremonies. One with the professors from Anshan Normal University and the other with our classmates. Our first ceremony with the professors was a very formal welcoming. It is hard to know how to behave when you are immersed in a different culture, but I think it is especially harder to know how to behave when you are immersed in a different culture and in a formal setting at the same time. Just to give you a mental picture of how scared I was to make a mistake, I don’t think I moved a finger the whole time I was in there. I was as stiff as a stick. Our second ceremony with the students was not as formal, but we were still treated like royalty. They were just as excited as we were to be there and to see them clapping and smiling as we walked in the room really touched my heart. The professors mention over and over again that having us there is a memorable experience for their Chinese students. I wish I had had the guts to let them know that being here is a once in a lifetime experience to some of us. I guess I still have time to build up the courage.

Chinese is so hard to learn! Learning to speak Chinese was our first class and it was not easy. We learned some of the greetings such as “hello, how are you, I am doing well”. You know, the usual starting point to learning any language. I definitely need to start practicing because we will be tested. Our next class was with Mr. Pang. We were divided into groups. One UAB student to about nine or ten Anshan students. We introduced ourselves and jumped straight to work. It is hard to communicate with them. Even though they know some English, it is still hard to understand their accent and there are still some words they don’t completely understand. Although many people think that communication is the most important tool to making group projects work, I believe all of our groups will be able to discover that communication may not be the most important tool. I wonder if there is not just one important tool. Perhaps all (communication, organization, commitment, creativity, etc.) are all equally important. None above the other.

This was my first day at Anshan Normal University. More to come…

-Nereyda Garcia

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Responses

  1. Sounds like you had a good first day! Can’t wait to see pictures, hear more about it and hear you speak Chinese!!! We miss you!
    -aud&ana


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