China Reflection

Hailey Vogt

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Interacting with the kids at the schools we visited was possibly the best part of the entire trip. Knowing that I took the opportunity to teach kids about a sport that I love is the best feeling. There was a 14-year-old girl at a school we visited who had been doing color guard for only a few months, and she took everything that I was teaching her in stride. I ended up teaching her 4 or 5 different flag tosses and she was able to match everything that I did. Colorguard had been introduced about 6 months ago by WGI, Winter Guard International, the organization that runs the winter guard competitions, so none of the kids that I interacted with had been doing it for long. It was amazing to see how much those kids chose to work at something. We visited 4 schools and each student that I interacted with was unique. The schools were at different levels of learning and exposure to the sport, so we were able to teach technique and tricks for different levels of the sport.

Visiting all of the historic places in China, particularly the Great Wall, was an awe-inspiring experience. Visiting the Great Wall, one of the Great Wonders of the World, helped me to see the world from a different perspective. Having the opportunity to see and take in all of the history and beauty was something that I thought I would never do in my life. Seeing how Chinese history helped to shape world history was truly an educating experience. Our tour guide and translator, Grace, made sure that everyone got the experience of a lifetime while under her care.

Overall, going on this trip to Beijing, China with the color guard was a life-changing experience for me. The team was the only team from the United States who was invited to the inaugural Beijing WGI Regional. Being a part of the color guard history in China is an accomplishment that I will carry with me for the rest of my life. Seeing how the people in Beijing live and how alike it was to when I visited Washington, DC was interesting to encounter. Having the knowledge that although people across the world have a different culture and language, I now know they that lead similar daily lives that we do.  

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