Coming home was great! When we finally landed in Detroit Monday morning and got off the airplane, it was great to see American people and signs that we all could actually read. We all had so much fun on the trip, but we were all really happy to be home!
China was an unbelievable experience. The experiences we had going halfway around the world to play basketball and tour a completely different and new country is something that none of us will ever forget. Playing against a Chinese professional team was a lot different than playing against our regular season opponents. The game was different, the court was different, the refs were different, and the rules were different. But after the game, getting to eat and hang out with the players, we realized we weren’t that different. Yeah we might have a language barrier, but the love of basketball brought us all together and trumped any barrier that was set in front of us. The players we met were so funny and great to get to know. Getting to know more about basketball in a foreign land makes me more appreciative of what we have here in America.
I’ll never forget this trip to China, and I’m sure none of my teammates will either. Being in a country where the language is completely new and different to us, we really had only each other to talk to. That was a major reason why we became such a closer team over the course of the trip. Another reason was we weren’t distracted with the outside world (no cell phones or Facebook) so we got to know each other even better. Traveling together and having only each other to rely on really built trust among us and now we’re an even closer knit team than before. It was a lot of fun to spend 9 days in China with the team!
Looking back on the trip, there are several things that I’m going to miss about China: the ease of the airports, the shopping, the cities, the culture, the slower paced life, all the bikes and scooters, and mostly the people. And there are also things that I’m not going to miss: the smog filled air, the driving (constant honking), the toilets, the cleanliness (or lack thereof), and the food (definitely not an acquired taste). I’m definitely grateful to live in a country like America, even though China is a great country and culture too! All in all, China was an unbelievable and unforgettable experience and I’m so grateful to have had the opportunity to go. It’s definitely a trip that I will always remember!