Unforgettable Adventure “Chinese Bridge 2017” by Wang Anqi
One day my teachers asked me “why don’t you participate in this competition” and I asked them too “Do you really think I can do this?”. They put their confidence in me and the journey started off. We spent a lot of time together practicing and our bond got strong day by day. Finally, the time came and on 10th July 2017 I went to Beijing, China. I was so nervous and had strange feeling because this was my first international visit even I have not had travelled alone in my country(Pakistan). On the way to exit from airport I promised myself that my first goal is to enhance my Chinese skills, speaking, listening and other is to make friends.
Chinese Bridge was the best opportunity for me because 145 students from 122 countries were going to participate in this competition. On one platform I was going to experience different cultures, their lifestyles. This was my first time giving an interview and having an entire photoshoot of mine.
Then we all 145 students were divided in their respective groups like Asia group, America group, Africa group, Europe group and Oceania group. I was in Asia group and we were 37 contestants. The teachers who led our group were Peng laoshi and Fen laoshi. They were so supportive in my entire journey. In Beijing, we stayed 3 days and visited Great wall of China, Headquarter of Confucius Institute and Forbidden city. In these days, I made a lot of international friends and the amazing thing was we were speaking same language “Chinese”. My Asia group was like another family to me, we shared same bus, we ate together, we played together.
On 12th July 2017 we went to Changsha, Hunan where the actual competition started. Competition had 3 rounds; 1-written test,2-Speech and talent performance and 3-Quiz game. Our Asia’s teachers and volunteers trained us for speech and talent they helped and encouraged us at every step. On 13th we had written exam.
On 14th July Asia’s group was the first who performed and my contestant number was 9.I was nervous, worried and confused because this was my first time on the stage but I just remembered my Lin laoshi words it doesn’t matter whether you win or not, what actually matters is that you have to give your best. After my speech and Chinese cultural dance performance I was satisfied with myself. Because I got an opportunity on an international platform and I was representing my Pakistan and my University.
On 19th July Asia group has been scheduled for Quiz game which constituted four days. Every day, we had rehearsals on how to record the TV program and classes to practice for quiz game. Those were hectic and tiring days but unforgettable because I experienced how to record a TV show. The quiz game format was that there were twelve Chinese university students sitting on their benches in a round circle,I had to go to each of their table for two minutes in which time both of us had to make other person guess three Chinese language words. I gave my best that day and top 30 contestants were selected.
I didn’t make it to top 30 on the competition but I was elated because I gained a lot of experience, made friends and had an unforgettable journey. The top 30 contestants were amazing, outstanding and had enormous knowledge of Chinese language and culture. This competition was extremely competent, the people who had been learning Chinese for at least 4 years, were well-versed, had been exposed to the Chinese environment were there. The contestants who made it to top had proper and standardized internal evaluation in their own country before coming to China for Chinese Bridge. They have been practising for years.
My suggestions are, we should provide proper guidelines and standardized internal evaluation to the students who are going to participate for this competition. We should hold different activities to prepare our students. I wish one-day Pakistan will make its position stronger in this competition.
It was an unforgettable journey, I miss my Asia group and my friends. On 23rd July, I came back to my country (Pakistan). In these 13 days, we shared a strong bond everyone was crying, sad and upset while leaving but Confucius Institute headquarters(Hanban) gave us opportunity to meet again by awarding us one semester scholarship. Next year, I will go to China to study Chinese language because this has become my passion and now I want to be an expert of Chinese language like Chinese.
Chinese bridge, you made my dream to come true Thank you.