Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Josun Big Buddha!

Ok so I'm reallyyyyyy behind on my blog posts. I'm sorry! Lets blame it on Beijing...
I never even got a chance to share my experiences from LAST weekend with you! I know, I know, I'm horribly slow. After this I can move on to my trip to China. Yay!
The previous Saturday marked the halfway point of my time as a global fellow…so sad! I remember waking up that morning and feeling an overwhelming sense of gratitude. I knew with only four weeks left that I had to cherish each moment from that point on, making sure to fully embrace this amazing opportunity that I’ve been given. So far, I think I've lived up to that challenge.
On Saturday I FINALLY got to see my beautiful friend from SC, Melody! She grew up in Hong Kong near Stanley (where we went to see the Dragon Boat Races). Melody and I will both be juniors next year, but I was lucky enough to meet her on Breakthrough Hip Hop as a freshman!  I’ve been waiting to see her since day one, so I was very excited when we discovered that we both had a free afternoon. We met in TST for a delicious Vietnamese lunch of pho and lettuce wrapped spring rolls. We spent an hour catching up and comparing stories of our culture shock experiences.

Lunch with Melody!
 After lunch Melody took me to…drum roll please….A DANCE CLASS!!! We went to Jordan to take “Girl Hip Hop,” and I was so so so excited! The class was entirely in Cantonese, so I had to learn the combo by watching only. Such a special experience! We learned a combo to a sassy Britney Spears song, and the style was sexy and girly…right up my alley, thank goodness! I was definitely a little rusty, but I had a blast and even made some new friends! If I have the time I want to go back again as soon as possible.

I reallyyyy missed dancing!

Thank you for taking me to a class Melody!
On Sunday, the entire group traveled together to Lantau Island to see the Big Buddha! I’ve been wanting to visit him for weeks, so I was very excited. We took a cable car to Ngong Ping city, which ended up being nestled right in the middle of breathtaking mountains and green foliage. It was slightly overcast, but I was thankful to have a break from the extreme heat of the city. It was so beautiful!!! I almost enjoyed the feeling of being outdoors away from the crowds as much as I enjoyed our day of sightseeing.

Taking the cable car in Lantau!

We decided to have a quick little photo shoot...





Isn't it beautiful?!
After strolling through the streets of Ngong Ping, we began to climb the huge flight of stairs that led to Mr. Buddha. There were A LOT of stairs. (If only I knew what was to come next weekend on the Great Wall...) But it was all worth it when we got to the top. The view was incredible - lush green hills and mountains tucked in between large stretches of water. It made me so happy!! I was reminded of all my time spent camping and loved getting the chance to breath in the fresh air and enjoy something other than city skyscrapers.

We had to walk up those...

Helloooo Giant Buddha.

Lovely ladies!

The doors into the Buddha!

See ya next time Big Buddha!
We also walked the "Wisdom Path," which was a very short walk to these huge stone pillars coming out of the ground. The pillars had Chinese characters on them that we couldn't read, and I assume that was the wisdom we were searching for. Oh well. I felt a little wiser walking back none the less.

Gaining a little wisdom...
Overall it was a wonderful weekend. The perfect halfway point! Now...are you ready for Beijing?!

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