cropped-CSA-blogs-WIDE

Life Outside of China

 
11260479 10153595211292755 5515459178905933728 n
Coming to China is a bizarre yet fulfilling experience, no matter how long you plan on spending here it always finds new ways to surprise, delight, excite and sometimes just annoy you. Yet, I found one of the strangest things about China is the day that you come to leave it and the legacy it leaves with you. I have lived in China for the past 18 months, six months in Beijing and 12 in Xi’an, not that long when compared to some of the other foreigners I occasionally bump into, but long enough to really feel part of the place.
 
Having spent the entirety of last semester living with a Chinese family in a suburb of Beijing with next to no other foreigners it took me a while to really get acquainted with some of the cultural differences, which divide us. Just as I felt the differences narrowing, there I was with my passport and boarding pass in hand boarding my flight home via the Ukraine (don’t ask).

Read more: Life Outside of China

Xi’an, Hua Shan, and some useful China travel advice

IMG 0412
We planned our trip only a few days before departure. Maybe “plan” isn’t even the right word. But rather, we purchased our train tickets. There wasn’t much availability, so our only choice for the Beijing — Xi’an leg was to take “hard seats.” This is a nearly 13 hour overnight journey. At the time of purchase I thought things like “this will be a good experience,” “it can’t be worse than a 13 hour flight,” and “I’m saving so much money.” But after being told that these seats were “not as comfortable as airplane economy seats,” I started to worry. But then I was reminded that it could have been worse. A recently arrived CSA student, called Ayden, decided to join us for the trip. By this point all of the “hard seats” were fully booked. Ayden was sold a “standing room only” ticket for the 13 hours. When I first heard this I thought it was a joke, but sadly for Ayden it was not. So we had three seats, four people, and 13 hours to figure out how to get comfortable. I went into the train station with a genuinely optimistic mentality. 

Read more: Xi’an, Hua Shan, and some useful China travel advice

Five fun Chinese learning tools to try

 
Hanyu.svg

It's no secret that learning Chinese is difficult, but you can certainly have fun doing it! I've compiled this list of my top five favorite digitial tools to help with learning Chinese. It's worth noting that I am a beginner so this list is probably most appropartate for those in the beginner to intermediate range. 

Read more: Five fun Chinese learning tools to try

The importance of experiencing “real Beijing”

real beijing

(or at least what is outside of Wudaokou….)

On numerous times I have heard fellow classmates tell me that they are heading home soon and in their whole time here they haven’t done anything except for activities based in Wudaokou.

Alarm bells go off in my head! I think to myself…. your about to leave a country that has thousands of years of history without experiencing one single cultural or historical site? Wow!

Many people don’t seem to realise what an opportunity they have when they come to Beijing to experience something that will be unlike anything else they can experience in the world.

Read more: The importance of experiencing “real Beijing”

A weekend in Shanghai

 

IMG 0242If I could pick any city in the world to live in right now, it’d be Beijing. I suppose that’s why I’m here, but my path through American high school means I’m limited to staying for the summer. I was here last year, and coming back to Beijing seemed like an obvious choice, but in the interest of expanding my understanding of China I planned to leave the capital to volunteer in Anhui province for some time as well. Other than that I had no plans to leave Beijing, but surprises happen all the time in China. On CSA's Great Wall Camping trip I made a new friend, Ben, a German living in Shanghai for the summer. And so a week later my friend, Aneesa, and I are boarding the high speed train on the way to figure out what Shanghai is all about. 

 

 

Read more: A weekend in Shanghai

Questions from China

 
Customers use computers a 001
While messing around with my homestay 'brother' the other day during an English class, I began showing him the various hilarious phrases you could get Google to 'autocomplete' based on most popular suggestions once you type in the first part of a statement or question. He suggested doing the same thing, except using China's own version of Google, known as Baidu. After some initially hilarious results, I pitched the idea of making this mind-blowingly random topic into a full-scale blog to my boss David who gave me the go-ahead as long as I could relate it to something vaguely Chinas Study Abroad related.

Read more: Questions from China

  • Beijing

    China Study Abroad Ltd
    3610 Capital Mansions,
    6 Xinyuan Nan Road, Chaoyang
    Beijing, 100027
    Phone: (+86) 10 8468 3799 
  • London

    China Study Abroad Ltd
    154 Bishopsgate
    London EC2M 4LN
    United Kingdom
    Phone: (+44) 0207 377 84 
  • Hong Kong

    China Study Abroad Ltd
    Rm 604-7 Dominion Centre
    43-59 Queen’s Road East
    Hong Kong
    Phone: (+852) 800 968 924 

Community

y-icon
f-grey t-grey

Our Newsletter