It has been a blast for me and my family spending the summer of 2008 in China. It wasn’t the first year that we’ve been back since we have actually moved here to America from that big Asian country. In fact, we’ve gone back every single year for the past 5 years, mostly to visit our family and friends. However, as much as it sounds like a normal family visit to other people, I actually try to make the most out of it through learning about the Chinese culture more and more each time I go back. This year was even better than the previous years because I visited a total of four amazing cities, including Hong Kong, Shenzhen, Xi’an, and Beijing.
Beginning with a 12-hour plane ride from Las Vegas, stopping at Seoul, Korea, on the way, and finally landing at Hong Kong’s airport, my excitement had surprisingly stayed at a high level compared to my previous years of the same experiences. I assumed it came from an innate pride as a Chinese for the Olympics, but that was a little too soon for such feelings since it was only the month of June. As I set my first step onto the land of China, I was rushed by the crowds of people out of the airport and onto the taxi. Man, nothing beats an overcrowded country like this one. The first two weeks that I spent in Hong Kong and Shenzhen later on has been almost nothing but rushed shopping. Both these cities are quite similar for the fact that everyone and everyplace seemed so busy. Maybe a little exaggerated, but the maximum time each person spends at a mall, for instance, is probably less than an hour.
Continuing my China journey, I flew into the city that probably holds most of the Chinese empire’s history, Xi’an. This place is absolutely extraordinary. It may not be the most modern city in China such as Shanghai or Hong Kong, but its historical sites and style of the city definitely wins a top spot in cities in the world that are worth visiting, at least in my opinion. One of the sites that is a must-visit is where the Terracotta Army guides the tomb of the first emperor of China, Qin Shi Huang. It isn’t exactly located in the city, but instead about an hour drive away towards the edge of the province. Upon my arrival, it almost took my breath away just glancing at the sight of the tall soldiers and horses. These soldiers stood more than six feet tall in lines. Their face expressions emerge a sense of bravery as if they were born to protect their greatest leader. This site made me extremely proud to be a Chinese for it represents and plays a significant role in the history of the Chinese people.
Nothing compares to pride I felt when I arrived in the city that hosted the Summer Olympics 2008, Beijing. Looking at the Bird’s Nest, where the Olympics’ ceremonies and track events would be held at, created a feeling of respect for the world. This is the event that will bring millions of people from all around the world together to celebrate the passion we all have: “One World, One Dream.” And the thought of my own native country hosting this extraordinary event is just phenomenal. As the Olympics started, I was unfortunate to stay in that city until the end, but I can definitely say that everything was worth this entire trip.
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