My roommate invited me to join her and her club members to Harbin Institute of Technology’s Activities Fair. I decided to tag along and see what a Chinese campus activities fair is like and walk around the more forested campus.
We first ate breakfast at one of the cafeterias. This is when the cafeteria is moderately busy.
After breakfast we met with her classmates and then took a 30-40 minute bus ride to the second campus (my campus is the first one). I followed my roommate up to the sixth floor of the campus’ center building and observed how they interview applicants. I didn’t realize the organization she is in (Green Union) was so prestigious! They are only able to accept 30 new members out of the hundreds of applicants.
I then went on my way and walked around campus.
For some reason, I was not expecting the Activities Fair to be this active. There were so many people!
I then visited the Anime Club table and took a picture of this pretty man wearing cosplay.
From this table, I made a friend who then lead my through the activities fair, giving me suggestions on which clubs I should look into. I look at the Beijing Opera Club, Ethnic Minority Club, Singing Club, and others. I didn’t sign up to any, but I did talk with the representatives. I was the only foreigner at the entire event, so I was quite the eyesore. One benefit to being different from everybody else is that people are interested in getting to know you. Through this entire event, I met and talked to a lot of people and made some friends that live in my campus. It was a lot of fun!
Secluded Path on Campus
After escaping the madness that was the Activities Fair, I took a stroll around campus and found a nice path to walk down. It led me to the end of the forest where there were many older Chinese men and women going about their day: either doing Taiqi, singing, sitting, or playing with their grandchildren.
I have a video of an older group of women singing and men playing the erhu. WordPress won’t allow me to upload the video unless I purchase an upgrade. For now, I’ll post the video on my Facebook. The older people took a special interest in me and beckoned me to join them in singing traditional Chinese music. I begged not to sing and just listen, but they pulled me in. I looked at the sheet music to find their notes were numbers and not on any scale. Finally, I jokingly sang/mumbled “Mo li hua,” which made them laugh. I really enjoy talking with older Chinese…I don’t know why. Maybe the difference in culture is intriguing? They are also very welcoming and always curious to hear about my life on the other side of the world. I hope to do more of this when I begin my studies around Lugu Lake!
I said goodbye to the musicians and singers and then I was on my way. I had to get back to first campus. We had an event that afternoon, go to Sun Island.