Category Archives: Favorites

Xie Xie, China, for an Incredible Experience: A Video

Shanghai is an incredibly fascinating, neon metropolis of contrasts. Old & new. Classic, historical temples & sleek, modern skyscrapers.  Strong tradition & hybridized pop culture. Communist rule & privatized economies.

For a short clip of my month in China, please enjoy the video below:

So why did I choose Shanghai? For many of the same reasons my peers mentioned in their interviews: a center of global attention for its rapid development, emerging Asian economy, its sinodependency with the rest of the world, China’s rich history and culture, and the opportunity to see a “Great Wonder of the World” to name a few. Continue reading Xie Xie, China, for an Incredible Experience: A Video


Chinese Cuisine Photo Tour

A photo collage of all the foods I have tried, loved, didn’t love, or was too afraid to try. Enjoy.

IMG_5795 Cooking our meat in the broth
Hai Di Loao, Shanghai – a popular hot pot restaurant

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA Make your own sauce concoction
Hai Di Loao, Shanghai

Beef Brisket Presentation
Hai Di Loao, Shanghai Continue reading Chinese Cuisine Photo Tour

Beijing Day 3 – The Wall. Trust me, it’s great.

With a span of 5,500 miles designed to keep out an entire country, a cost of over 400,000 lives during construction which left bodies built into the wall itself (so it’s been said), and its panoramic view, it’s no wonder this popular tourist destination is considered one of the “Seven Great Wonders of the World”. There is simply nothing quite like it.

If you plan to visit the Great Wall, don’t forget to do your research on the best way to arrive there whether it be by bus, taxi, or minivan. Victor was able to book us a driver in a minivan so 11 of us piled into the vehicle for a round-trip cost of only 20 USD each.




OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAAlthough this hike takes only about 30 minutes (harmless right? no.), the hike is extremely steep so bring plenty of water and take rests! I was so winded after 10 minutes. Stair-master training at the Wooden Center did not prepare me for this. Continue reading Beijing Day 3 – The Wall. Trust me, it’s great.

Beijing Day 1 – Tiananmen Square & Peking Duck

“That’s all for lecture today, and enjoy your four-day weekend-” the rest was cut off as the class bustled around the room to get their backpacks and supplies together. With our four day weekend, a large group of us had booked round-trip bullet train tickets to Beijing and a 3-night stay in a youth hostel. The top tourist-y spots we had planned to visit: Tiananmen Square, Forbidden City, The Great Wall of China (duh), and The Temple of Heaven. I am certain Beijing will not disappoint!

SH railway stationShanghai Railway Station about to board the bullet train

BJ bullet train exterior

BJ train interior
Settling into our assigned seats for the 5-hour journey

BJ train table
All ready! Continue reading Beijing Day 1 – Tiananmen Square & Peking Duck

A Footprint of China’s Rapid Urbanization

After each of our Friday field trips end at around noon, we are dismissed to explore the city or return back to the dorms – whichever we prefer. A large group of us decided to check the Shanghai Urban Planning Museum off of our Shanghai bucket list. The Urban Planning Exhibition Center is a 6-story building showcasing historical, current, and planned buildings. China’s incredibly rapid development and urbanization over the past few decades can be illustrated through this exhibit.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERASUPEC – Shanghai Urban Planning Exhibition Center

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAA huge golden replica of the highly developed, architecturally unique Shanghai skyline to scale as soon as you enter the lobby.”Better City, Better Life” Continue reading A Footprint of China’s Rapid Urbanization

Tianzifang Today: An Enclave of arts, alternative cuisine, and blood bank?

A fun, cosmopolitan maze of neon lights, boutique shops, unconventional cuisine, and cobblestone,  Tianzifang is a tourist attraction for the senses: twinkling lights for the eyes, aromatic restaurants, bustlin’ sounds in the busy alleyways, cheers for the 2014 World Cup from neighboring bars, and fascinating foods for the palette.

Formerly a residential area in the French Concession, Tianzifang was redeveloped for businesses in 2006 and popularized by the media.


OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA Continue reading Tianzifang Today: An Enclave of arts, alternative cuisine, and blood bank?