Day 7: Mr. Zhao and Tie Dye

Today was the day. The day where we leave the bubble of Yangzhuoran. We had two choices; one being ZhouCheng, a place where tie-dye is famed all around town, to both the locals and tourists. The second being, a wind farm, in which we learn about the science of wind-powered energy and will be provided with the opportunity to stand under a wind turbine. However, before this trip, I will be visiting a silversmith named, Mr. Zhao. As of now, I am waiting to leave for the silversmith business, and will provide an update later on of the trip and of the silversmith.

The silversmiths were near SiFangJie, and were busy working away on pieces of jewelry. On the way there, I walked with my teacher support person as well as another classmate, Anders L, and was told that they could be very direct in saying no to talking if they were busy. This, kind of scared me. After arriving there, however, they ended up being unbelievably welcoming to us. They were open to talking about their pasts and lives to, well, strangers. I was also able towatch them hand-make and mold silver into earrings and clothing decorations while asking them questions about their work. Which, surprisingly, went pretty smoothly. In addition to watching them work, their father/father-in-law, which he himself was a very interesting person, was also there. We were able to see some of his flawless calligraphy of 500 traditional Chinese characters, which he only just wrote last year at age 89.

Later in the day, about ten of us, including me, went to ZhouCheng to tour around visit tie-dye workshops. We walked around a few workshops and were able to see the process of making tie-dye. Furthermore, the guide also introduced us to different methods of creating and dyeing the quilts and scarves that are hung so widely around. Overall, it was incredibly beautiful and was breathtakingly colorful.

Hi, I'm Shirley X. and I was part of the 2018 Voyagers Group. I am from the United States but moved here to Shanghai in the sixth grade. After returning from Microcampus, I feel as though the experience has shaped and changed me in so many different aspects. The month long journey has helped me grow and I have learned so many lessons from the locals, the teachers, as well as my peers and hope to be able to return to the sensational town and community of Xizhou one day. After this, I will continue to apply everything I have learned to my life and onwards.