Day 6: Olympic Park

I think it is safe to say that everyone has now found a rhythm. Today Austin and CJ talked about getting together and playing some pick-up basketball with some of the Chinese kids who play near Austin’s house. Sean, CJ, Ben and Will are meeting at one of their host family’s houses (with their families’ approval, of course). Natalie, Olivia D. and Kelsey are doing something similar. I talked with Andy and Evan about what they did with their families on Sunday: Andy went swimming and shopping with his family, and Evan went to a food market. I am sure that was fascinating: I went to one as well,  and, having never been to one before, I couldn’t help but think how far all of the products must have traveled just to be accessible to thousands of people….maybe more. It feels like the real food markets are all kind of hidden from the foreigners, and I was one of the few privileged enough to see it. It was a very neat experience. From all of this, anyone can see that everyone has become much more comfortable with Beijing and is doing very well.
After class today we ventured to the ever hot but nevertheless always well populated Olympic Park. Despite the heat, there was no lack of enthusiasm from the group. Now Maret students walk up confidently to food stands to ask for water and snacks. When Evan brandished a full cone of cold, succulent, mouth watering, chocolate covered ice cream, students such as Austin raced to the closest food stand.
While in Olympic Park we strolled around to see the various famous structures (as you can see from the pictures) and Will found someone else who was willing to punch the ground in front of a camera (although the guy did have a Mickey Mouse suit on, so it’s a little less impressive).
And that was the day.

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