Hey everyone!

I’m currently sitting in the San Francisco airport (good work United with the free Wi-fi!) and I’m trying to figure out this whole blog thing. Here’s what I’m going to try do in the next few weeks.

If you missed the memo, I’m going to be in Beijing studying Chinese through a Stanford program. I’ll be living in dorms at Peking University and taking classes through Peking University. And yes, Peking University is in Beijing – Peking was the name of the city before it was called Beijing.

I hope to update this blog every day with stories, pictures, cultural encounters, digestive intrigue, fun facts I’m learning in class, etc. This is a huge experiment for me, and I’m glad that all of you who are bored enough to read this will be sharing along in this experiment.

But before I take off, I wanted to lay down my pre-trip feelings, which, to be quite honest, is pretty just pure eagerness. I have no idea of what to expect. I’ve heard the food is different – and not like cats, dogs, and pig liver different – but just different than American Chinese food. For instance, no fortune cookies. I’m interested to see just the sheer size of the city. It’s one of the largest cities in the world and I have heard the energy there is out of this world. Speaking of energy, as an Earth Systems environmentalist major, I’m very interested to see how their burgeoning energy sector shapes the landscape there. Rumor has it that China produces a new coal power plant every week! Ai ya! I’ve also been studying the language since September, so we will see how well my training has paid off. My guess: 不好 (badly).

I could talk for a little more on energy in China (or for that matter food, geography, whatever)… but hit the comments if you want more of something! This should be an interactive blog where I’m actually writing things that whoever decides to read this wants to read.

Thank you all for starting this journey with me. I’m about to take off so my next post I’ll be on the other side of the world! How cool!?!?