After the first night with their host families, the students arrived at Xiamen University this morning full of stories to tell. Although the details are for the students themselves to share, it was certainly fun to hear about everybody’s experiences and first impressions and to watch everyone swap stories. Most interesting of all was the variety – each student had something unique to share, from their host family’s personalities, to what their room looked like, to what they ate. Tomorrow they will have a break from classes to spend the entire day with their host families for cultural excursions in the area, so additional stories are sure to be shared on Monday!
In the afternoon, the whole group went together to have one last lunch at Nanguang Dining Hall (Due to the end of the summer sessions on campus, the UDNSLIY program will have meals at another cafeteria on campus). Up until this point, we’ve been having all our meals on the second floor of Nanguang, where the staff members very graciously took care of us, making sure there were “reserved” signs on enough tables and providing fruit and beverages for us every lunch and dinner. But now the Nanguang staff will have their summer break, so we celebrated our last meal at Nanguang with a buffet that the staff prepared just for us. Additionally, Jessica offered some words of thanks on behalf of the group, and Rachel played the guitar while the group sang Coldplay’s “Viva la Vida”. Starting on Monday, we will be eating at another dining hall – Furong – instead of Nanguang. It just won’t be the same!