It's been a great run for the summer break, and I'm sad to say that this will be my last blog post, because as of Saturday night I'm back home in America! The past two months seemed to have both flown by and stood still at the same time, leaving me with so many memories and the possibility of the future. There's so much to process and share with all of my family and friends back home, and so much to reminisce over with friends from IES. Luckily between various forms of social media, staying connected with friends in China and America shouldn't be too difficult!
I'm experiencing a bit of reverse culture shock as I adjust back to life outside of Beijing. It's actually been pretty hard to switch back over to English after weeks of Chinese 24/7, especially with little phrases such as "excuse me" and the like, but in a couple of weeks I'm sure that will have settled down. Talking about my experiences is a bit of andevnture in and of itself, mostly due to the fact that sometimes, I don't even know where to start! I've even found myself thinking in Chinese from time to time, I guess old habits die hard (althought this is a habit that I do NOT want to kick in the slightest).
I've learned so much about me and about the world these past two months, and have made friends that will most certainly last a lifetime. I know that this isn't going to be my last time in China, but the goodbye was still very bittersweet. Until next time!
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<p>Hi, I'm Gretchen, and I'm currently a prospective Languages and Linguistics Major at Swarthmore College, PA. I was born in Rota Spain, and have grown up in various places around the states (notably Hawai'i), and am very excited to be participating in the Beijing Summer Language Intensive program! I'm really into all different types of art, and exploring that interest through all sorts of avenues (this blog will be one of them). On this trip I hope to gain not only language skills, but innumerable friends and experiences that last a lifetime. Join the adventures of an unapologetically queer, short (but not tiny) college student navigating one of the biggest cities in the world!</p>