American culture mixing into Chinese culture

My experience with hosting a Chinese foreign exchange.


The Chinese students at Yard House for dinner with the host students and their moms.

By Daniela Hernandez, Online Editor

Back in November, I went to China as a foreign exchange student. That experience changed my life. It exposed me to a whole different culture and government. Now, it was the Foshan students’ turn to experience our culture.

On January 24th, a group of Chinese students arrived in Houston. I took my girl, Emily, to experience the most Texan thing possible: Whataburger. Sadly, she wasn’t much of a fan of it.

It was really hard to communicate with her because she was really shy and didn’t understand English that well. The other girls that came were advanced in English, but not Emily. Once we got through the language barrier, we had a good time. It took a while for her to open up and talk to me, but by the end of her trip, we became friends. She even started touching my hair. I did everything in my power to make her trip fun. I ended up with $9 in my bank account after she left, but I took her everywhere and kept her busy.

We went to all sorts of places. The school planned to take us to NASA, the Butterfly Museum, the Death museum, and the Rockets game. They really enjoyed the tour through NASA, even though it was freezing since the tour was outside. The Butterfly museum wasn’t their favorite place ever. They thought the butterflies were disgusting and dirty. They were so worried that they would land on them while I was trying to catch them. We thought the most exciting event we would go to was the Rockets game but all the foreign exchange students fell asleep during the game while only the Americans were enjoying it.

On her last day here, we skipped class and went to Chinatown. She was so amazed by Americans having so much freedom to be able to skip school. She explained how in Foshan, the school is like a prison. They can’t step out of the campus the entire week they are there and are forced to eat the school’s food.