My trip back to China in 2005 was so exciting. We went to so many cities, and got to do so many different things.
The first place we stayed was in Beijing, China’s capital. I still remember the most exciting thing about the hotel we stayed out while we were there: There were seals in a part of the hotel, and they had an unlimited buffet for breakfast with both American breakfast foods, and Chinese food like noodles and rice which absolutely made my morning.
But more importantly, we were able to meet the rest of the families on tour with us, friendships were made, and I remember being so surprised at how many of the children on the tour were adopted from the same orphanage as me.
We spent our time in Bejiing seeing all of the sites. The two I remember the most are the Great Wall of China, and going to the Forbidden city. A couple of other places we visited were Tiananmen Square, and the Summer Palace. I was also really surprised to find a Starbucks inside the Forbidden City. I also remember going on my first pedicab ride, and going swimming in the hotel’s pool as much as possible.
The next place we went to was the historic city of Xian. We visited temples, and we were able to see
the Terracotta Warriors, approximately 8,800 warriors, horses, and chariots built back in 300 B.C.. But honestly, my favorite thing that we did inthat city was have a dumpling feast. Yes, a dumpling feast. There were so many different kinds of dumplings that were brought out to us. I was in heaven. To this day, I still remember how excited I was when they kept bringing out all of the different dumplings. They were amazing.
When we had finished our touring in Xian, we traveled to Chengdu. This is where we had the opportunity to go visit pandas. We were able to sit next to them and give them a hug, and we got to hold red pandas as well.
One thing that made our stay in Chengdu so special was that we were able to connect with two professors that we hosted a year or two before the trip. We got to see where they live, meet their families, and went out to dinner with them.
The next part of our trip was very special to me. But I am not going to talk about all of it on this post, because this stop in Hefei, China was, and is very important and something that really impacted my life, and played a large role in my journey of finding my identity. So that is why I want to focus on this part of the trip in my next post.
At the end of our trip to China, we stopped in Shanghai for a couple of days before saying goodbye to the friends we made, and the beautiful country we visited.
The trip is definitely something I will never forget. And it was such an important step in learning about my culture, and trying to understand where I came from.
Before concluding this post, I wanted to share some questions and answers that I had with my sister about the trip.
What were your first impressions of the country?
“My first impression of China was that it was hot and humid. Up to this post in my life, I had never been overseas. Seeing the culture and atmosphere was so surprising. It was a beautiful country. Plus, with everyone speaking a different language was interesting. And you could feel the buzz of everyone being busy. “
What are some of your favorite memories/highlights of the trip?
“Some of my favorite memories from China was hanging out with my childhood friend June, who I had known most since I was 4. And also trying new foods! The food there is amazing! Of course there are Chinese restaurants here, but experiencing the real thing…. Priceless. Also, the Great Wall of China was phenomenal!”
Did our trip to China make you want to go visit Vietnam so you could see where you’re from and learn more about your culture?
“Visiting China did make me curious about my own home country. But I didn’t have a desire to really visit at that moment. I’m not sure if it was cause I was so young and with the culture shock and all. But I mostly thought ‘It’d be nice to go visit and see if there’s other similarities in the two countries’. And I thought ‘If it happens, it happens’, and I knew I’d make some friends along the way. “
We can both say that we really enjoyed the trip. We learned new things about that culture. We did go back to Vietnam in 2009 for my sister to visit her birth country, but that will be talked about in a future post.
I know that this blog post was a little long, but thank you for reading all of it! (if you have gotten this far J )
If there are any questions about our trip, whether it be for me or my sister, please feel free to ask! Leave a comment, or you can reach me via email @ firstname.lastname@example.org ! We would both love to talk more about the trip!
My next blog post will be solely focused on the days we spent in Hefei, the city I was found, and where I lived for 8 months!
Thank you again for reading my blog! Until next time.