If you were to find a spot to love in China, Hangzhou would definitely be a choice. Green. That’s what you see: forest, gardens, tea plantations, and the jade green water of West Lake. We arrived at school this morning to collect “our own” plus ten more students from our Hangzhou school. Along with the Hangzhou fifth grade teacher and a tour guide, the four of us, and 28 students boarded the bus.
First we went to the promenade leading to the wooden boat that would take us across West Lake. The INTL* students sat in the aft portion of the boat to get a good view. The trek across the lake was beautiful, and it felt good to be bringing back memories to INTL.
Second, we went to the Xiling Seal Society. This was a serene lovely garden, or rather series of gardens, built within wooden houses that housed art.
Third, we went up a little mountain near the tea plantations and had a Chinese lunch. At the end of the meal, two cakes were brought forth for Sophia (now age 10) and Victoria (age 11), a decade and a double digit! The cakes were gorgeous: one chocolate on chocolate on chocolate and the other made with green tea covered with fruits. The girls were grinning ear to ear.
Fourth, we went to the silk factory. The tour guide took us through the museum, which was fascinating. Then we went to a hands-on area where the students were shown how to make colorful scarves by tying off sections of a silk square ( basically tie-dye Chinese style). It was great fun.
We ended the day back at school and were happy with our day. It rained, or shall I say drizzled, a bit on us toward the end of the trip but no worries. It’s not cold.
*In 2020, the International School of the Peninsula (ISTP) formally changed its name to Silicon Valley International School (INTL) to better reflect its bilingual programs, location, and international values.