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ISTA Festival begins with a slice of Beijing history

Here's an update from the first day of the Festival.

The Lama temple was our first port of call, this morning. We began our adventure of the day by visiting the world famous Lama temple. The Yonghe gong was constructed in 1694 during the Qing Dynasty and even though the crowd of tourists remains a working temple today.  One can find not only ISTA participants patrolling the grounds and braving the cold but the occasional orange clad monk. 

Observing the divergence of ancient China and the modern world we then began to explore the local Hutong surrounding Yonghe. Listening and observing the sights, sounds and smells of Beijing today it sometimes is difficult to imagine what things were like in the not so distant past. 

Once we sampled some local “Street Eats” we returned to the British School of Beijing to discuss and evolve the wonders that we observed and experienced on the streets.  Our ensemble groups discussed and used the wealth of understanding mixed with our own lives and interpretations of the world to begin the rest of our days work. 

This evening we were all exhausted and ate at British School of Beijing’s Cafeteria to replenish some of the energy, which was quickly dwindling. But though tired we were all excited to see what would occur tomorrow as we pieced together more and ore of our work.

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