We worked for five months to find the right people to comprise our team of China Mental Health trainers. We had 14 lined up and 7 came.
This is us at the Great Wall
We all arrived together except Heather and Jane. A cute Chinese gal met us and took us to our hotel, the Beijing Howard Johnson, right across the street from the busiest train station in China. It was the end of a Chinese holiday so it was super busy and our hotel windows looked right down over the masses of people, it was very facinating.
The next morning, Saturday, we went to a very elegant breakfast in the hotel. We will plan to stay at the Yuyang hotel next year.
After breakfast, we started on our cultural and historical "training" and visited the Great Wall, "the "Badaling", very steep, great weather, really good time. On the way back we made a stop at the jade factory, which we all really liked, then we ate lunch upstairs.In the afternoon, we took a bullet train to Jinan. When we arrived, we were met at train station, and on to the Quanchen hotel.
Sunday morning we continued our cultural and historical training, visiting an herb village. Dr. Li was our host and Sarah was our tour guide along with her friend Mong Mong. We sauntered around the village. Some villagers were bashing peanuts out of shells
while others were husking corn. Some in our group found a fruit that had a weird gooey filling. Heather and Skylar thought it was cool. Then, we made our way into the hills (walking) where there was an outdoor pavillon setup with lunch. We were still getting used to the food, and some jokes about going and finding some peanuts.
The village was quite old
On our return to Jinan, we stopped at a factory, owned by a friend of Dr. Li. Then back to our hotel. Sunday evening we had our "YSAC" (Young Single Adults, China), celebration. It was on the 2nd floor of our hotel in an office. It was a nice room, and 22 people came. There were two guys and the rest girls. It is made up of a "match-making" group that Dr. Li hosts. Sarah and her friend Mong Mong, were also there.
During our "activities", Jane presented on Positive Psychology, and Shelley also presented, on Self Care. Then we opened it up for a panel discussion, where our group discussed and took questions about relationships and mental health issues. We learned from one of the Chinese participants that it's not part of the Chinese culture to talk about their feelings and be vulnerable. They are taught to not express their feelings. Dave helped Shelley connect her phone to a projector to display "the wheel of self care". We needed two hours, but our time was limited. They begged for more.
During Jane's lecture, she divided the group into two long rows. Everyone held hands and squeezed each others hands at the "right" time as we played the "electricity game". They loved it and thought it was clever. After more discussions, we turned on music and we moved the chairs out and Shelley and Skylar got them going with some songs.Sheila started with a "move", and each person added on their own move. The "next" person taking a turn, did all the previous moves before adding their own. Dave asked, "can we do some current music" and then proceeded to play some current songs. Dan talked to one gal who wanted more info about building relationships. Our host, Dr. Li seemed to be very happy about how things went.
On Monday, we went to Jinan University and met Jennifer YuYang Tong. She is the department head of Psychology. We found out that she did her doctorate degree in the U.S. so her English was very good.