By: Yu Yang (Alina), Work and Travel Summer 2014 Ambassador Scholar

Yu Yang (American name, Alina) is a Work and Travel participant from China, working at Big Mountain Deli & Creperey in Lake Placid, NY. In her blog post, she shares how she enjoys her free time in the Adirondack Mountains.

I’m Alina, a 20-year-old girl from China. I live in Lake Placid, NY, which is an amazing place with beautiful scenery.

It’s a lot of fun here. We have English classes in the library every Tuesday and Thursday from 5:30pm to 7:00pm. The local library is organized for international students to improve their English and learn more about American culture and customs. All the teachers are volunteers. We are from all over the world and share different views and have our own customs during the classes. It’s so exciting and fresh for me to learn all kinds of customs from America, Turkey, Bulgaria, Russian, South Korea, and so on. I really have realized the significance to being open-minded. There are so many things, some of them, things I even can’t understand, that commonly happen other countries. This has really broadened my horizons.

There’s a fresh market every Wednesday from 10am to 2pm. People bring fresh fruits, vegetables, honey, maple syrup, fresh baked goods and other items. It’s really interesting to experience market transaction in America, because it is quite different from China.

I have met some good friends in my host community. I learned how to make cookies, which was really fun. I really appreciate all the kind people who have helped me a lot. Life in a foreign country gets easier because these friends around me. They encourage me when I’m frustrated, support me, give me advice when I’m hesitant, and take me to the doctor when I’m sick. All they have done has made me feel like they are my family, and they warm me whenever I need it. Thank you to all the people who have helped me create this opportunity to be here and to those who treat me as family. It’s my life honor to meet all of you.

To learn more about how Alina spends time in Lake Placid, watch her video below!