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2017 WCE China Summer Trip Report

6/26/2017 Monday (Seattle) Today our 18 member WCE Student Delegation led by Mrs. Dorris Cronrath (WCE Board Member, Wilson Creek HS), Mr. Richard Burgess (Heatherwood Middle School), and Mr. Jesse Swarthout (Heatherwood Middle School) departed from Seattle, will transfer planes in Beijing, and arrive in Guangzhou for their tour of China. The Student Delegation will visit Guangzhou, Xian, and Beijing, China. Pictures and emails will be posted on this page during the trip. One afternoon in Guangzhou the delegation will tour with local Chinese students and in Xian the group will visit Gaoxin Greenwich School! Emails and pictures will be posted here on this web site during the trip.

6/27/2017 Tuesday (12:15 AM next day, 9:15 AM Seattle time) The delegation has arrived safely in Beijing. Due to weather conditions their flight to Guangzhou was cancelled. Jessica (our wonderful China Tour Manager) made arrangements for the delegation in Beijing. She had a guide and a bus meet them. The delegation will overnight at The Lake View Hotel and then have a morning tour in Beijing. In the afternoon they will fly to Guangzhou.

Mr. Swarthout sent us two photos of the WCE Delegation at the airport in Beijing.

6/28/2017 Wednesday (1:45 AM next day, 10:45 AM Seattle time) Jessica Chen (our wonderful China Tour Manager) has emailed to say that our Delegation has arrived safely in Guangzhou! They have gathered their luggage and are now traveling by bus to The China Hotel where they will check in and get a well-deserved night's rest. While in Beijing the delegation toured the Temple of Heaven and went shopping at an outlet mall with their Beijing guide. They were able to fly to Guangzhou in the evening on Flight # HU 7803 (the same flight that was cancelled the previous day due to weather conditions).

Mr. Swarthout has sent a couple of pictures from their day touring in Beijing and one photo from the Beijing airport. Jessica has sent a photo taken at the airport after the group arrived in Guangzhou!

6/29/2017 Thursday (11:30 PM Guanzhou time, 8:30 AM Seattle time) Peter, our outstanding Guangzhou guide, has sent us an update of the day's activities. "Today was a full, happy and exciting day! In the morning, we went to the Guangzhou NO.2 Kindergarten. The kids were so cute and we really had a good time having class and playing together with them! Then we went to visit Dr. Sun Yat-sen Memorial Hall. The memorial hall is also very great and we liked this kind of architecture. For lunch, we've tried dim-sum and it was delicious. In the afternoon, we toured the city together with the local Chinese students! We went to the Five Ram Statue and the Guangzhou Museum. We learned even more about Guangzhou during these visits. We talked a lot and communicated very well with our new friends. Then came another highlight. We went to Up-and-Down Nine Pedestrian Street and shopped with the local students' help. It was interesting. Then we had another delicious dinner at Lianxianglou Restaurant. We are getting used to Chinese food now. The Cantonese dishes are really impressive. Then we had to say goodbye to our local friends and we began to miss them already!

Tomorrow, we will learn Chinese Kong Fu and visit Xiangjiang Safari Park! We are really looking forward to both!"

6/30/2017 Friday (11:30 PM Guanzhou time, 8:30 AM Seattle time) Peter has sent us an update of the day's activities and a few photos. "We had another full and happy day today! In the morning, we first practiced Chinese Kong Fu. We learned Tai Chi from a Tai Chi master. All the movements and skills are so cool and they actually help with health a lot. We not only learned how to do Tai Chi but also learned the culture and manners in Chinese Martial Arts. It is really special and interesting to experience Kong Fu in the Kong Fu kingdom. Then we spent the rest of our day in Xiangjiang Safari Park. It is a huge park with so so many animals. We enjoyed all kinds of animals and it was fun and knowledgeable. The pandas were lovely! It seemed that time flew away very fast. We had to leave even before we realized it was time. It was our last day in Guangzhou and we had a farewell dinner on a cruise boat. The buffet on the boat was great and the scenery along the Pearl River was even better. We all had a good time. Tomorrow, we will leave for Xi'an and we are really excited about it."

7/01/2017 Saturday (11:30 PM Xian time, 8:30 AM Seattle time) Peter, our wonderful guide from Guangzhou, has traveled with the delegation to Xian and has sent us an update of the day's activities along with some photos. "It was a really full day today. We left Guangzhou in the morning and flew to the ancient capital — Xi'an. It was a smooth flight. Then we went to visit the Ancient City Wall. We learned a lot about the history, the building, the usage, and we had a really good time on it. Then we went and checked into another good hotel. For dinner, we ate at the Tang dinner show, which was a dumpling feast. There were actually 16 different kinds of dumplings and all of them were both good-looking and delicious. We all liked them a lot! Then we watched the Ancient Tang Dynasty singing and dancing show. It's really exotic and impressive. Tomorrow, we will visit the world famous Terra Cotta Warriors! It will be a knowledgeable and exciting day!"

7/02/2017 Sunday (11:45 PM Xian time, 8:45 AM Seattle time) Peter has updated us on today's activities in Xian for our WCE Delegation. "Today we discovered more about the city and the local people in Xi'an. In the morning, we went to the world-famous Terra-Cotta Warrior museum. It was just great. We gained more knowledge about Terra-Cotta Warriors there and learned many cool things. It is so amazing to see hundreds of different warriors and learn about the relevant knowledge. There are three pits and we visited them one by one. To finish, we went to the museum to see more relics found there. They are so great especially considering the time when they were built. We again had Chinese lunch today and it is delicious as always. In the afternoon, we went the Bell Tower. We experienced the Chinese underpass. The Bell Tower is very historic and has a good view. For supper, it is still the tasty Chinese meal. We had a good time all day today. Tomorrow, we will visit the Wild Goose Pagoda and we are ready for our school visit with the local students!"

7/03/2017 Monday (11:45 PM Xian time, 8:45 AM Seattle time) Peter has sent an update of the day's activities in Xian for our WCE Delegation. "We have had another full day today. The Big Wild Goose Pagoda was our first destination. We had a really good quality time there, learning more history from stories about the city of Xi'an. We also learned the common sense of Chinese calligraphy and how to write it. It was a good lesson and full of joy. In the afternoon, we visited a local school: Xi'an Gaoxin Greenwich School. First, we toured around the school. It's a big school with beautiful campus. Then we had a class party together. We enjoyed the local students' performances and we also sang them two songs. Then we played games and did sports. We really had a good time together. Time seemed to fly and we had to say goodbye to our new friends before we realized it. In the evening, we went to Muslim Street to experience the local way of living and to find something we like and something interesting. This is another good process of learning and we all had a good time. It is interesting and beneficial to see the life of people with a different religion. We had a great time all day! Tomorrow, we will visit Beijing, the capital of China. We are so excited about that!"

7/04/2017 Tuesday (11:45 PM Beijing time, 8:45 AM Seattle time) Peter (our great Guangzhou guide) has traveled with the WCE Delegation to Beijing. He sent us the following update: "We have had a great day today! In the morning, we said goodbye to Xi'an and flew to Beijing. The flight was smooth and Beijing, the capital of China, it's just so big and so breath-taking. The weather here is great and the history here is long and endless. In the afternoon, we visited the Summer Palace. It is so large and the architecture there so awesome that we just didn't want to leave. The buildings inside are really Chinese style and the scenery is very beautiful. We also had a special dinner today. We had the famous Peking duck for dinner! It is so so delicious and we all ate a lot. The other dishes served with it were also very good. We have had a long and colorful day today! Tomorrow, we will go and conquer the Great Wall! We are really excited about it!"

7/05/2017 Wednesday (11:59 PM Beijing time, 8:59 AM Seattle time) Peter sent us the following update from the days' activities: "We had a wonderful and nice day today! We went to the Great Wall in the morning. Chairman Mao said "He who never climbs the Great Wall can't be called a true hero", and we are heroes today! The Great Wall is very steep and hard to climb but we all try our best to get to where we can get. We've conquered the Great Wall! It was a really interesting and healthy trip to visit the Great Wall. In the afternoon, we visited the Walk of the Spirits of the Ming Tomb. The architecture there is great and grand. We had a good time there. We learned more history and stories about the past dynasties. In the evening, we went to watch the Acrobatics Show. It was so amazing. All the movements and activities they perform are challenging and exciting for people to enjoy. We all love that! Tomorrow, we will go to Tiananmen Square and the Forbidden City. It has been a wonderful trip!"

7/06/2017 Thursday (11:30 PM Beijing time, 8:30 AM Seattle time) Peter has sent us our daily update. "We had a very full, rich and wonderful day today. In the morning, we went to the largest square in the world - Tian An Men Square. The buildings there are all grand and we finally see what the "heart of China" looks like. All the architecture there is worth seeing and enjoying and we know for sure what "people mountain people sea" means. We also visited a World Cultural Heritage Site - The Forbidden City. This is really a royal trip. It is educational and enjoyable to see the place where emperors once lived. The buildings inside are really impressive. In the afternoon came another highlight. We went to the Xiushui Market (silk street market) for shopping. We looked for what we were interested in and bargained with salesmen. We found some cool stuff there and we really liked the experience. For supper, we had pizza! It was the same as and a little different from home. We and our stomach all had a good time. Tomorrow, we will visit the Bird's Nest & the Water Cube and then it will be time to head home. We are missing China and the people here already."

For Parents Meeting the Delegation tomorrow: First go to www.hainanairlines.com. Click on Flight Status and check on Flight #495 (or call Hainan Airlines at 1-888- 688-8813) to make sure the flight is on time. The flight is scheduled to arrive in Seattle at 11:35 AM. You can meet the Delegation as they walk up the stairs from the South Concourse, between baggage carousels 7 and 8 on the Baggage Claim level. Remember they will need 45–60 minutes to clear US Immigrations and US Customs after their flight arrives.

7/07/2017 Friday (2:30 AM Beijing time next day, 11:30 AM Seattle time) Peter (our great Guangzhou guide who has traveled with the delegation to Xian and Beijing) sent us our final update from the delegations last morning in Beijing. "Today we went to visit the Bird's Nest & the Water Cube in the morning. The buildings there are great and grand. Then after our last lunch in China, it is time to head home. The whole trip was great experience and everyone will really miss China!"

WCE will post emails and pictures from the 2017 WCE China Student Trip while the trip is in progress. Please encourage your family and friends to view the WCE web site and follow the trip!