8.25am… 8.30am… 8.35am… Subconsciously, I kept glancing at my watch in between each bite of my breakfast. In front of me on the table, I had my notes for the day’s guide spread out in an attempt to do some last minute preparation. It was nearing 8.45am - almost time to go. Finishing one final bite of my bun, I made my way quickly towards the Chinese Heritage Centre.
The 26th of January was a rather special day for me, and for many others, I believe. For most of us guides, this was our first official guiding as we had never done any guiding anywhere before. It was no more a trial, but the real thing! For those Earthlinkers and NIE students who came along to support us, this was the first ever guided nature walk around the Yunnan Garden that NTU Earthlink and NIE Green Club co-organized.
It did not take long before the first group set off towards the garden. Soon after I, myself, together with Thai led a second group out too. It was a beautiful morning – the sun was out and no rain clouds were in sight. That was a good sign!
At the start, I was feeling rather nervous as I brought the group towards the garden. Lucky for me, Thai was very well-prepared and broke the ice among the participants by first introducing ourselves and giving everyone a brief history about the Yunnan Garden. It took a while for me to warm up but I soon felt comfortable with my group and everything went on rather smoothly.
My group looking up at the flowers of the Yellow Saraca. The tree has many flowers growing out of almost everywhere on its branches and even its trunk.
Jackson and his group walking through the garden. (We found out later that the participants in his group were actually present for another event organized by the Chinese Heritage Centre. So in the end, they soon left, leaving the guides alone. I believe they had an enjoyable time though, while it lasted.)
After a short tour around the Yunnan Garden, we made our way back into the Chinese Heritage Centre for the second segment of the day – to see the NanTah Pictorial Exhibition located on the second level of the building. As the exhibition room was rather small, not all groups could fit in all at once. However, the problem was easily solved by taking turns and every group was able to have their go and no one missed anything.
Yongxiang telling his group about the history of NanTah. Everyone was listening attentively!
As the last attraction of the day, all of us played a photo-hunting game, the guides together with the participants. Each group was given a few pictures and we were supposed to find out where the photo was taken, hurry to the spot, and take a group picture there. I am sure everyone had fun playing this game, running around trying to find the exact location.
One of the photos my group took for the game. We were hoping that our interesting photos would score us more points!
We were not the overall winner but really, everyone was a winner then because all of us “won” ourselves some food from the game.
The day’s event soon came to an end. It was quite a good experience for me. I hoped everyone else had a great time that day too!
Smile, everyone, for a job well done!