By @petragingera, Shanghai Summer School Alumni 2017
I am sitting on board the Shanghai-Guilin high-speed train (which by the way, is a technological marvel that goes up to 306km/h, making it one of the world’s fastest!), speeding by the countryside of Jiangxi Province. With only one week out of our month-long Shanghai Summer School journey to go, my friends and I were finishing the last of the pâté we had brought from home. We were also trying out some random Chinese snacks we had gotten. Amongst the many things I’ve learned during my time here, is that life is like a bunch of Chinese snacks. You never know what you’re going to get! Thankfully, the ones we had gotten this time were… Less exotic than the previous times. As I look out at the picture-perfect landscapes in the distance, my mind drifts off, and all the memories collected in the past month flood my mind.
The past weeks at Shanghai Summer School had definitely changed all of us in some way or another. All of us had left our comfort zones and immersed ourselves in this megacity of 25 million people that hums with activity and brims with opportunities. Everything from the unimaginable crowds in the metro to the myriad of new flavors in Chinese food, struggling with using chopsticks, rickety rickshaw rides at night, exploring hidden Chinese quarters, mornings spent trying to learn the Chinese language, sweating in the relentless summer heat, endless nights dancing our hearts out with new friends and the many times we found ourselves sitting at the Bund waiting for the sun to rise from behind the now-familiar Shanghai skyline… All these, and a million other memories that I can’t quite put into words.
These are my personal experiences and what I look back most fondly at. If you asked another participant, he or she might have something more or different to add. But what all the participants have in common, I’m sure, is that we all had an unforgettable summer and made wonderful friends with whom we will forever share memories of Shanghai Summer School 2017 within our Shanghai.
For many of us, we left knowing that this will not be the last time we will set foot in this country. So see you very soon, my wonderful and unique China!
Shanghai Summer School provides you with an experience that you can build upon throughout life, through learning a new language, discovering a new culture and people. A stay in the exceptional Chinese metropolis allows an individual to adopt a new perspective, which says, that values are relative and that something is not necessarily right or wrong, but instead one way or the other. Acquired knowledge of Chinese language and cultural specific is a solid foundation for further studies or a broad selection of knowledge in a promising business career.