As you can tell by these pictures, I fit in here in China about as well as infamous Survivor nude Richard Hatch at a clothing market. But that's been part of this experience that I've enjoyed the most -- stepping completely out of my comfort zone and being thrown into a completely different culture. After one year of studying Mandarin at UTD, I took the plunge so to speak and came to China for the summer. I spent the first month traveling all over the Eastern part of China, all the way from Guangzhou in the south, up the Yangtze River and past the Three Gorges Dam, through Shanghai and Xi'an (home of the Terracotta Warriors, the so-called Eighth Wonder of the World) and then to Beijing.
I spent the next two months studying at the Beijing Foreign Studies University, or BeiWai to the locals. Everyday Monday through Friday, I spent four hours a day in class, met with a Chinese tutor for an hour and spent about 3 hours studying or doing homework. Throughout the course of my stay, I've lived in a dorm, with a Chinese roommate and with a Chinese host family. I spent the weekends exploring the city and taking trips to the Great Wall and to ride horses on the grasslands of Inner Mongolia.
>> See more pictures at Richard's web site