October 31, 2013

Lady Berries visit sister school in Jinhua

by Whitney Jennings
For the Pharos-Tribune

Editor’s note: Members of the Logansport girls basketball team are visiting China this week for a historic trip. The Lady Berries are the first team from Indiana to make an in-season trip overseas, as Monday was the first official practice day for IHSAA girls basketball teams. The following is a journal that senior Whitney Jennings is writing for the Pharos-Tribune.

Thursday, Day 5

After several days of touring several amazing places, we finally got to visit schools today. The first school we visited was Jinhua Honghu Road Primary school, the sister school of Franklin Elementary.

The welcome we received was unreal. Hundreds of students and teachers cheered and clapped for us as we walked on stage. It kind of felt like we were Olympic athletes. Several children came on stage to show us their different talents. In return I was given the chance to show them a little of my ball-handling skills.

A couple of young girls then came on stage to read a Chinese poem, which we were to repeat, much to the enjoyment of the students. They were laughing so hard at our pronunciation of the words. I’m guessing we butchered the words pretty bad. When we arrived back at our hotel this evening, we found a picture of that moment on the front page of the Jinhua evening newspaper.

Our first stop in the afternoon was at Jinhua No. 8 High School. Again, the welcome we received was amazing. This is where we finally got the basketballs out. We did a few skill challenges with the members of the boys basketball team. It was so much fun to be on the court and show them what we could do. Before we left we were each given good luck charms to hang in our cars. It was a touching gesture that we all appreciated.

The final school we visited today was Jinhua No. 1 High School, Logansport High School’s sister school. We were then given chance to interact with the girls basketball team. For about an hour or so, we did different drills and skill competitions. We had a 3-point contest, which Madison Dalton dominated, and a dribbling competition.

Afterwards, we ate dinner at the school with the members of the team. I sat by a couple of girls who spoke English fairly well. They asked me questions about school, boys, sports and anything else high schoolers talk about. They expressed to me that they were “so sad” because they would not see us again.

Our trip has been amazing so far. As great as it has been to see the Great Wall and experience this different culture, the people are what have made it worthwhile.