So today was tai chi and paper cutting! And the odd symbol on either side of the flower is the Chinese character for happy, but doubled. We were told to make them look cute, hence the second one with hearts.
While the paper cutting was enjoyable, the tai chi was impressive. Our hosts requested the presence of three tai chi masters from a nearby province, which in and of itself was pretty exciting! Unfortunately I was too busy trying to imitate them to get pictures.
(Sept. 3, 2015 Update: I was able to get pictures from another intern who was in class 2.)
However, those were not the things that made this the best day so far. Don’t get me wrong, I enjoyed them quite a lot, but sometimes it’s the small things that make the biggest impact. Like using your very limited Mandarin to buy fruit from a local vendor. For the last two days we have been taking classes in “Survival Chinese.” And I was able to use it to buy some peaches and apples. Technically you don’t actually need the language to buy anything, but I cannot explain the sense of happiness I felt as I thanked them and walked away. It really is unlike anything else, to use a language you don’t fully understand to connect to people who don’t particularly understand you for the first time.
So here I am with my apples and peaches, content to call it a good day.