Adventure in China

By: Maria Libera Vallone

Me teaching in China
Teaching in Beijing
Making noodles!

       My Aunt Nancy used to tell me that when she was a little girl she was told if she dug a hole in the back yard and kept digging, eventually she’d reach China. Little did I know that one day I decided to study Chinese as I have been a sort of calligrapher for quite some time. After grueling hours of study and learning over 500 characters, I was asked to lead a group of students to Beijing, China for a semester and study Chinese language and culture in exchange for my English skills at the Jingshan School. First of all the classes had over 60 students! What a challenge, as you can see from the title photo! The school also had a “country school” where we spent a day and I tried my hand at making noodles.

On The Great Wall of China
On The Great Wall of China

On the way, I was coaxed into riding a camel!!!! (see below). We also climbed the Great Wall on another occasion and I got a medal for it!!! One of the prettiest things I witnessed was the art of making paper cuts, which are actually cut with a small sharp knife by hand on rice paper.







To say this was the experience of a lifetime, is an understatement. I will most likely write a Part II to my time in China as one blog is just not enough. Have any of you traveled to China and can share an experience with me? I’d love to hear from you even if you haven’t been and have any questions for me. The next time I talk about China I need to remember to tell you how I made meatballs and pasta in a WOK!!!!!!!!

Zaijian!   Goodbye for now!



THASC is a unique small American business producing cards and other promotional products.


10 thoughts on “Adventure in China

  1. Dana Burdick January 15, 2015 / 2:38 pm

    Maria l have never been to China or climbed the great wall of China. It sounds fascinating. It sounds like your stay there was very exciting, for you as well as for your students. Can’t wait to learn how to make meatballs in a wok, it sounds truly amazing. Dana.


  2. Scot Finck January 15, 2015 / 2:59 pm

    Amazing!! You inspire the adventure in all of us!!


    • Maria Libera January 23, 2015 / 12:13 am

      Dear Maureen,
      Our grandparents would never have thought that their grandchildren would dare to travel so far and have this adventure. Young people today are so lucky to have these opportunities to travel abroad.Thank you for following the blog


    • Maria Libera January 23, 2015 / 12:18 am

      Dear Scot,
      I was lucky to have an aunt who inspired me to go abroad at an early age. I’m sure you inspire your children too to reach for the stars . What a role model you both have been.

      Please write again.


  3. Joe January 15, 2015 / 10:17 pm

    I remember hearing a song by Leonard Cohen back in the 60’s with the lines, “Suzanne takes you down to her place by the river …and she feeds you tea and oranges that come all the way from China…” It always seemed as far away as the moon, but the smiling people in your photos look like they grew up next door.


    • Maria Libera January 23, 2015 / 12:05 am

      Dear Joe,
      Before I left for China, the people who had gone on the previous exchange told me there would be 3 things I’d remember when I got back: the people, the people and the people.
      You were so right about that!


  4. thasc1 January 20, 2015 / 6:35 pm

    China is a wonderful country to visit. It is an eye opening experience to see how others live. I think I even met that two humped camel at the Great Wall.



    • Maria Libera January 23, 2015 / 12:08 am

      It was such an adventure for me that i’m sure I could write a whole other segment on our travels through China like our visit to the terracotta warriors in Xian. I never thought i’d ride a camel! Anything is possible in this incredible culture! Thanks so much for sharing your experience there!


  5. maureen January 21, 2015 / 4:47 am

    How educational and exciting!


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