First Impressions

It’s been almost three full days since I landed in China. I am completely blown away by how much I love it. After spending eleven hours waiting at PEK with my fellow weary badgers, staring awkwardly at each other and trying to socialize and stay awake and remember each other’s names, I had my doubts as to how well I would fit in during my time in Tianjin. But that feeling is gone now. It’s true, I am very different from a lot of the others–I’m older and Mormon and have different ideas about what makes a fun weekend night activity–but I’ve found that I can not only be a part of that group, but also that I certainly didn’t come all the way to China to try to fit in with a bunch of American college students. So I’ve sorta been doing my own thing–like making friends with a middle aged man from Beijing while the others played cards at the airport’s Starbucks, or running off to go explore the other college in town and making friends there (my dear friend Coco is studying there for a few weeks), or skipping the group city tour so I could go to church. And as it turns out, the other badgers think it’s cool. Two of them even invited themselves to come to church with me. And last night I brought Coco over to my dorm, and everyone loved her. so. Dare to be different. People like it.

As I write, it’s early Monday morning. We start class today at 8:30. I’ll try to go back to sleep for a little while before that… Jet lag is still kicking my butt a little bit. I’m totally fine during the day, and I have no problem falling asleep at night, but I always wake up after six or seven hours (that may sound normal to you; believe me, this is completely unprecedented and completely unacceptable). I guess, more power to me? Maybe I can turn this into a permanent feature of my sleeping habits. It certainly will make it so easy to get up for morning taiqi class.


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