I’ll have to be ‘brief’ because I’m jetlagged to death. From October 6-15th, SUDes 2nd years were in Chengdu, Sichuan, China for a collaborative workshop with students from Southwest Jiaotong University. As well as being an amazing work opportunity, it was an incredible experience on its own. The biggest pro for the trip, however, is that it was essentially free. That’s right, SUDes PAYS FOR IT! =D (Well, university and foundation funding covers the flights, some travel, and accommodation…)
The basic itinerary was overnight 18hrs of flight from Copenhagen-Stockholm-Beijing-Chengdu arriving on Saturday. Sunday we were put into work groups and met our Chinese host students, who took their groups to various places. My group, for example, went to Wuhou Temple, Jinli, and the Chengdu Giant Panda Breeding Research Base.
Monday was the full-class site visit to the project site in Dujiangyan, a nearby city that is famous for its 2200+ year old irrigation system that affects the whole of Sichuan and downstream regions. The site is a large district with rivers to the north and south that covers well over 330,000 square metres. As well as this, we visited the old town and some historic structures. Tuesday was when the real work began, with the workshop being an intensive three-day competition that culminated in being ready to print a little after midnight on the end of Thursday. Evenings were spent around Chengdu, lunches were at the surprisingly diverse and delicious restaurants on campus. Friday, of course, was presentation day and by the end of the afternoon there were three winners.
That left Saturday as our only remaining free day, and many of us used it to visit Dujiangyan again. The city, as said before, is famous for many things. The first thing I did that day was to visit the Panda Valley at Dujiangyan, a little out of the city set into the mountains. After this, we went back to the old city and into the scenic park region. Dujiangyan is known for its connection to the roots of Taoism and the surrounding mountains are covered with temples and pagodas amongst the forests. The crowning jewel of these is Erwang Temple, which had closed early by the time I got to it, though the most visible is Mt. Yulei Pavilion, a tall pagoda structure that rises above the forest is visible from afar which I did manage to climb. Sunday, of course, was 22 hours of travel back to Lund.
A future post might arrive with more photos and thoughts. The trip was amazing. SUDes has been going to China with costs covered for many many years and it is something to look forward to when you become part of the course. It was a great experience and it was even better shared with classmates and friends, both old and new. For now, I will return to regularly scheduled classes.