List of 20 news stories.

  • Homestay Reports from Hohhot

    Brent and Rajit:
    We stayed at the home of Mr. Guo, whose sixteen-year-old sister Nancy came to his apartment to live with us for the two days.  We had met Mr. Guo previously, as he had been driving along with us and taking pictures for us on our trip through Inner Mongolia.  We communicated with him in Chinese, and although Nancy’s English was very good, we tried to speak mostly Chinese with her as well.  When they first picked us up, we went to the mall and browsed the stores. We played in the mall arcade and tried our hands at some pottery. Both of us were surprised by the sheer number of floors in the mall (12!). Then we stopped at a restaurant where we ate spicy fish with lychee and shrimp. Later, we played badminton and grew an affinity for the game despite being relative newcomers to the game in the beginning.
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  • Homestays in Hohhot

    There is no student-written blog entry today because the boys all scattered to their different homestay locations this morning.  Ms. Bai and I explored the city all day today, mostly on foot.  The highlight was finding and wandering around the fascinating and bustling Muslim neighborhood in Hohhot.
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  • Far from Ho-Hum in Hohhot

    By Rajit Khanna:

    The boys enjoyed their latest morning of the trip, waking up for a 10:30 brunch containing delectable shao mai. Duer (our head tour guide in Inner Mongolia) even said that the relatively cheap shao mai elicited much more fanfare than the far more expensive FULL LAMB we had in the grasslands on Ms. Jin’s birthday.
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  • Goodbye, Grasslands. Hello (again), Hohhot.

    Here’s a list of the things we did today:
    1. We woke up for the last time (during this trip, at least) in our cozy yurts in the grasslands.
    2. We ate our last breakfast in the grasslands in the big dining yurt.
    3. The boys (and Ms. Jin) went for a ride on a fleet of small ATVs.
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  • Ms. Jin managed to blow every single candle out in one try.

    Happy Birthday, Ms. Jin!

    We had a quite a birthday celebration for Ms. Jin last night  in our dining yurt.  Not only did the dinner feature a magnificent whole roasted lamb and a specially ordered cake from Hohhot, but there was much singing — even by our boys!
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  • One More Horse Picture

  • Riding today on the wide, windy steppe

    Photos from Today’s Big Ride on the Steppe

  • Temple, Factory, Performance, Dancing, Horseback Riding

    The following entry was written this afternoon by Brent Gorton:

    On Tuesday morning, we visited a two hundred-year-old Tibetan Buddhist temple.  It resembled the temple we had seen in Hohhot very closely because it was the summer palace for the original when the Hohhot weather became too hot.
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  • This afternoon, we watched an equestrian spectacle just down the road from our yurt camp. The riding was amazing.

    Another Great Day in the Grasslands

  • Groovin’ in the Grasslands

    Lwazi Bululu:

    Everyone woke up refreshed and energized after having had the chance to sleep for at least nine hours last night (the first time this has happened the entire trip). Our day started off with a trip to a farm, which was very close to our camp. The farm was mainly a horse farm where they milked the mares, and we had a chance to sample the milk. It had been milked the day before, so it was fermented and that did not tickle the taste buds of most of us there. It was an “acquired taste” as Mr. Fry put it.
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  • Groton Boys in Traditional Mongolian Attire

    Photos from Today

  • Here we are near the end of our 4×4 ride in the desert.

    Desert Adventures in Inner Mongolia

    Since we stayed in the desert last night, an update was not able to be given and thus this entry includes two days of activities. On Friday, we ate a quick breakfast at our hotel in Ordos, then loaded the bus and drove about 45 minutes to the tomb of Genghis Khan. This “mausoleum” was enormous, dedicated to the great leader of the Mongols, who created human history’s largest land empire ever about 800 years ago. We saw many statues of Genghis Khan, as well as paintings on the walls commemorating him. It was amazing to see the memorial of such an important figure in history. Afterwards we drove to a restaurant in Ordos and had a great meal there. Then we got back on the bus and drove towards the not-so-distant desert.
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  • Our new home on the steppe!

    Greetings from the Grasslands

    Since we didn’t finish dinner this evening until shortly before 11:00 PM, I’ve decided to let the boys retire to their yurts so that they can get to sleep at a reasonable hour.
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  • Picking nectarines in a greenhouse.


    Today was full of excitement and adventure. We started off the day with an exquisite breakfast in the Phoenix Hotel in Hohhot, which marked the beginning of our journey into the grassland. Having traveled for an hour and a half, we arrived at a small village where we had a tasty lunch. We had vegetables, a pig leg, chicken, lamb, and a fish professionally caught in the Yellow River, and left quite a few leftovers. Afterwards, we went to a local greenhouse, where we picked fresh peaches and nectarines.
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  • Happenings in Hohhot

    Today the group had an early start with an 8am buffet-style breakfast. Afterwards, we headed to the Inner Mongolia Museum where we met some high school seniors who would accompany us through the rest of the day. A tour guide then brought us through three exhibits of the Inner Mongolian history, starting with the prehistoric history.
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  • Meeting Chinese Friends outside the Hohhot Museum

    Hohhot Pictures from Today

  • With our Hohhot friends at the beautiful centuries-old Buddhist temple.

    More Pictures from Tibetan Buddhist Temple in Hohhot

  • Here we are yesterday with our hosts at the entrance to the old campus of the venerable Tsinghua University in Beijing

    Group Picture at Tsinghua University

  • Happy to Be Here in Hohhot

    I’m writing a brief update now since it’s quite late (nearly midnight) and I’m running out of battery on my laptop (and my charger plug won’t fit in the outlets here).
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  • Here are the seven boys singing a song to the table (a tune they all know from morning chapel at Groton)

    Musical Dinner at the Phoenix Hotel in Hohhot (Inner Mongolia)