Monday, November 7, 2011

Running, Halloween and No More Soccer :(

Hey everybody!

So the last few weeks have been filled up with Mid-terms and field trips. Two weekends ago all the flagship students took a trip to a local farming community named Changshu. We were there to do research on a variety of topics, Agriculture, Industry, Manufacturing... My group did our presentation on Agriculture and I got to use my knowledge to compare farming practices within China and the United States. The top two groups got a 50 dollar gift certificate to a local book store, and our group was one of the winners, HOORAY!

Last weekend I decided to join an 8 kilometer (5 mile) running race around Xuanwu Lake. The lake is beautiful, it is just outside of the city walls which you can sort of see in the back round of the pictures. The walls were build during the Ming Dynasty, about 600 years ago, but it is still in great condition. A class mate told me that at that time the Emperor didn't have much money, so as a "tax" each citizen had to submit a single brick to be added to the wall. The brick had to have your name and where you were from written on it so if it wasn't up to standard with the other bricks they would be fined. I'm not sure how true that is, but it sounds interesting. Anyway, I finished the race in just over 40 minutes, 8 minute-miles or 5 minute kilometers. Finished about 18th out of 100, not too shabby.

That night after the race I went to Shanghai for the first time! Some friend and I went out there for Halloween. I got to ride on Chinas High Speed Train! We made to Shanghai in about an hour and a half. We were only in Shanghai one day, which was much too short of a time. but we got to stay at our friend house in the Frech Concession, it is very beautiful out there, little rivers and canals everywhere, the architecture is very European. I can't wait to go back.

Finally on Wednesday we made it to the last Soccer match of the season. Out favorite team, Jiangsu Shuntian versus a city called Nanchang. It was a great match. Jiangsu won 1-0. We were very surprised because the match was on a wednesday afternoon, so we thought that very little people would be at the stadium, but it might as well have been a Saturday Night match, because the Stadium was jam-packed with fans going crazy for the last time. Jiangsu ended up finishing 4th place overall in the the league.

Other than that, students are starting to search for Spring internships. I pretty sure that one class-mate Brandon and myself will be going to Yunnan province together in February and working for an Environmental Education Program. We haven't worked out all the details yet, so I am not positive what our job will be, but they did mention the need for some of their hiking trails to be mapped, so it looks like I get to use my Cartography skills in China!!!

Thats all for now. Hope all is well. Talk to y'all later.

Halloween in Shanghai. My friend Erin decided to go as Me. Her costume included stealing one of my hats behind my back, buying a blue jacket to match mine, dumping flour in her hair to match my gray hairs, then using a sharpie to draw my tattoos and her body. Way To Go Erin!

At the farming village in Changshu. Dennis and I are sitting on the bench feeding fake chickens while Jonathan has a conversation with a fake old woman.

Just after finishing the race. My class-mate Nathan is holding his cute baby Jane, standing beside them is his wife Emily, then two more class-mates Jason and Josef.

In the back round you can just make out the three arches of the Eastern Gate of Nanjing's city wall

The last Jiangsu Shuntian soccer match.

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