I can’t believe that my time in Beijing is slowly coming to an end. In two weeks, I will be taking the overnight train to Shanghai. Because I really don’t know when I will have a chance to be back in Beijing for an extended period of time, I am happy with my decision to spend this week’s holiday in the capital of China. With the short break from Mandarin classes that started just today (a little bit more a week), I will be able to take a few day trips and see more of the area.


The the upcoming semester at Fudan University is getting closer with every day. I keep receiving more and more correspondence from IES Abroad. In a few days, I will book my train ticket (in China one can only do so no more than 10 days prior to the planned departure date.) Just last Saturday, I had a chance to meet Christopher Qin, who will be one of the students in my IES Abroad Shanghai program. Chris is currently a sophomore at University of North Carolina and is originally from China. He stopped by in Beijing to visit relatives and discovered through facebook that I’m currently staying in that city. Chris invited me to join him for the Beijing Duck, probably the single most famous Beijing dish. Afterwards, we were also able to enjoy a very nice walk in the Choayang Park. It turned out that Chris is a very interesting and extremely friendly person. I really hope that all the people in my IES program will be as interesting. I also hope that I will challenge myself and learn a lot from the academic portion of the program.

This week I have a little bit of work since I have to submit my Dill Grant application. However, I plan to do so before the weekend so that I can make sure I have plenty of time to be out for the New Year’s celebrations, which I will describe in next week’s blog note.