Location: Beijing

Today, our second day “home” in Beijing, was most definitely a memorable one. The day started as per usual with our morning service at Dew Drops. Although seeing the children every day has become somewhat of a routine, it never gets old seeing the glittering smiles on the children’s faces. Our service at Dew Drops is technically “work,” but when work involves creating smiles and bringing much-needed light to others’ lives, it hardly feels like work at all. At lunch, as we munched on our PB&Js in our cozy adventure bus and jammed out to our favorite songs. We were excited to the brim for the adventure to come. Our afternoon excursion was an interesting and engaging trip to the art district of Beijing. The post-industrial set up gave the area character, and the design studios and cafes that lined the streets provided a creative backdrop for the lively district of Beijing. Strolling around in the busy streets, the group was able to lay low a little bit while still immersing ourselves in a newer (yet important nevertheless) aspect of Beijing’s culture. I loved the cafe specializing in matcha-flavored treats, and the seemingly endless shops filled with jewelry and other knick-knacks. Although the air was steaming, our spirits were high, and our afternoon adventure was a unique, enjoyable experience. As always, we ended the day with an intimate dinner filled with meaningful discussion and a little friendly adversity. One of the great things about this group is that we can have an engaging, intelligent discussion about current issues while maintaining a respectful, positive atmosphere. The connections we have established with each other in this short period are one of the biggest factors that have made this trip so life-changing. The activities and service we have been doing are wonderful and fulfilling, and the people I am surrounded by every day make those same activities extraordinary.