Everything is set. My bags are packed. Play time is over. I am heading to China.

But not for six more days. Sigh. What am I going to do?

Everyone else is in school. They just finished their first week. They are getting ready for the first big break of the fall semester: BarBQing while watching their beloved OU football team trounce the University of Texas at El Paso Saturday, Sept. 1. And I? I will be on my beloved plane headed for China. And sadly, I will not witness this football game. Nor will I participate in any Labor Day activities. Come to think of it, all the holidays that we love to celebrate in America I will miss this semester. And why? Because I had this overpowering urge to study abroad in China and China’s semesters are different than America’s. They don’t celebrate Christmas or New Year’s. They have a Chinese New Year’s which they celebrate towards the end of January, but it’s on the Lunar Calendar so it changes every year.

So, yes, I will not return from this epic adventure/study abroad until two weeks after January 1, right in time for the next semester to start up at the University of Oklahoma. In fact, I think I’ll have little less than a week to recuperate, get over jet lag and find an apartment to live in before school starts up in Norman. Sometimes I wonder why I do this to myself? Why do I put myself through so much? But after the experience I realize it was totally worth it.

For example, wMt. Timpanogas meadowithin the last two weeks, I have hiked Mt. Timpanogas, camped at some hot springs, hiked all over Zion’s National Park in Southern Utah and returned to Mt. Timp (as the locals like to call it) to camp over night. It’s been outstanding. My legs have hurt from the intense hiking, but I figure it is good exercise. I mean, Timp is over 12,000 feet above sea level. The hike begins at around 6,000 feet and round trip is over 14 miles. Now that’s intense! And so much fun! Not to mention it’s been a nice break from my Chinese studies. I have to prepare because China tests everyone who comes to study on their Chinese skills to place them in the appropriate classes. So, I want to get into the best classes possible.

Anyway, my name is John. I am going to Beijing, China. I will write once a week about my experiences. Maybe more this semester while I am studying abroad. I am stoked to go. I have my passport, my visa, my plane ticket. And I have to wait six days before I can get on that plane and depart. Meanwhile, everyone else is busy at school. Sigh. But it is a small price to pay for the epic adventure that is coming my way. Oh. And I’m a Mormon.


One Response to “T-minus 6 days and counting…”

  1. Jacque on August 27th, 2012 3:02 pm

    I’m super excited to read about your adventure! Looking forward to your posts!


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