Day 24

Interesting day today. I went to Sha Chun today to see traditional Bai embroidery, but they didn't have much. The tailors told me to go to Zhou Cheng instead, where they have more garments. I plan to go there tomorrow. But today was the first day that I rode a tuk-tuk here. After that, I went with Sabrina to see a tea ceremony performed, but the ceremony was altered for tourism. The tea wasn't the main aspect of it, the performances while we were drinking the tea was. There were performers who sang, danced, and acted out a Bai marriage (an event where there might be a tea ceremony), but we didn't get to see how the tea was made, poured, and served. We merely got them on trays passed out by people dressed in native costumes. I enjoyed the third cup of tea, the 'aftertaste' tea. The first cup ('bitter' tea) and the second ('sweet' tea) were OK, but not as good. I tasted cinnamon in the third cup, which added a nice flavor. They also explained that there was honey and ginger in it too. A guide took us through the house where the tea ceremony is performed. The house is quite large, and belongs to the Yan family. The guide said it was a hundred years old, and the Yan family still lives in the house, but only in one part of it.

At night, we drove to Lake Erhai to set up a campfire and make smores. We had chocolate, graham crackers, and tons and tons of marshmallows! Each person was entitled to three smores, but we could eat as many roasted marshmallows as we wanted. I only ate three marshmallows, but I roasted plenty for other people. I didn't want to eat as much marshmallows, but I enjoyed seeing them turn golden brown when roasted. If you roast them over the hot embers, not the flame, then they'll roast but won't burn. I think it's cool that the marshmallows puff up when roasted, and how the outer layer of the marshamllow is crisp, sweet, and melts in your mouth. When sandwiched between the graham crackers, the marshmallow squishes and tastes heavenly. Since we didn't have skewers, we whittled the end of a branch to make our roasting sticks. It was fun, though I had to try a few times to learn how to do it correctly.

Picture 1: 'Sweet' tea

Picture 2: Roasting marshmallows

Picture 3: Smore (blurry picture due to unfocused camera)

Hi! My name is Audrey... I'm really excited about Microcampus. I've never been to an area like that, and I'm looking forward to the fresh air and nice weather. I hope to learn how the people there live, as well as exploring the area and comparing it to Shanghai. Hopefully, I'll gain a great experience out of this trip.