foreigners in China

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Chinese Traditions, Comparisons, Cultural, Learn about China, Travel, Understanding Chinese culture

Being with foreigners from a Chinese point of view

My name is Henry, I am from a small city in Guangdong province and I moved to Zhuhai in order to begin my studies. After 4 years of studying I finally received my degree and during those years I fell in love with this city. It is not only a beautiful and relaxed city full of lovely people, it´s also the city where I met my lovely girlfriend Lulu. After my graduation, we both decided to settle down in Zhuhai and enjoy the fresh air and vibrancy of the city. I feel very happy to have the chance to work for InternChina, because the company helps me to grow and improves my English a lot. I´ve been working with IC for only 6 months and already made so many foreign friends and learned a lot about foreign cultures. I am responsible for customer relations in order to ensure the best possible time in Zhuhai for our clients, ranging from arranging pick up´s, apartments and homestay arrangements to solving any kind of problem you can imagine.
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As a Chinese person I think it must be very interesting for foreigners to know what Chinese people think about the foreigners coming to Zhuhai or  China in general. Therefore I would like to share my thoughts with you.

First of all I feel so surprised that almost all of my foreign friends don´t like Chicken feet. It is one of the most famous and delicious dishes in China but my friends think it´s weird, can you believe that? Also there is another dish which I need to mention. FROG!, My very favorite food. If you ever come to Zhuhai, I would be more than happy to take you to the best frog restaurant in the city. I´m 100% sure you will like it! Just imagine eating the best fish mixed with the best chicken, there you go. Cut the frog into pieces and fryit in soy sauce and chili which gives it a very special and unique flavor. The best flavor of course! But actually Chinese people don´t eat frog that often. And of course, for everyone for whom this sounds ridiculous, we also have normal food that isn’t like the Chinese food you can get in western countries and is in fact way better J It ranges from Tofu, spicy rips, Beijing duck to every imaginable kind of vegetable. Last but not least you should know that Zhuhai is famous for a lot of seafood at a very reasonable price and you can get everything from oysters to clams.

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Furthermore my foreign friends really like to discover all the secrets of Zhuhai in their free time such as going to the islands or climbing mountains. But most of them are, for those who didn´t guess, totally into the Bar Street. This is an amazing place where you can buy beers or cocktails, relax or party. But be careful with the alcohol, Chinese people like to “challenge” each other while they are drinking and often try to pursue you to drink more which is part of our culture, of course including drinking games as well. Maybe you will be a bit confused by this but just come and see it yourself and of course if you don´t want to drink you don´t have to but it can be loads of fun.

What do I like to do the most with my foreign friends? That would be going to the famous KTV (karaoke TV) in order to have a night of drinks, singing and fun. This is the thing Chinese people like a lot and they go for KTV very often. You can rent a private room with Karaoke, order whatever drinks and snacks you like and sing songs in Chinese or English with your friends. Most of my foreign friends love it and tell me that it´s the perfect place to release any kind of pressure. We really enjoy it!

I hope I can meet you one day in Zhuhai too!

 

Written by Henry Guan | Customer Relations at InternChina

Languages, Travel

Being a Chinese Foreigner in China

You may have read on our blog before about being a foreigner in China and the way the local Chinese respond to foreigners when they see them.  If you haven’t, you can read it here before continuing on.
Currently all my family live in the UK and my generation were the first to be born and raised there. The five generations before mine were actually born and raised in Vietnam, but going further back in my family history, my ancestors were from Guanxi in China.

Due to my background I get a different response to the ‘typical’ foreigner here in China and I will tell you some of my experiences I have had.

I first came to Chengdu in 2011 without the ability to converse in Mandarin. I only knew the basics such as hello and thank you. At that time, I relied on others to get around and more often than not my friend from Belgium would ask the locals for directions. That person would then turn to me to explain how to get there. They often expect that everyone who looks Chinese can speak Mandarin and is ‘the translator’.  It wasn’t me who asked the question, you should direct your answer to the one who asked. My friend didn’t need any help at all, his Mandarin was (and still is) way better than mine!

InternChina – Me with my friends from Belgium and Japan

During my first stay in Chengdu as a student, a few of my friends were non-Asian westerners. Whilst walking around on the university campus they were often approached by locals, sometimes these locals were looking for English teachers. Although my friends were not native English speakers they would be offered English teaching jobs on the spot because they had a foreign face. The locals would not even acknowledge I was there, even after my friend introduced me to them.

InternChina – Me and some classmates

This was actually quite recent one!  My friend Brigitte (also from a Chinese background – half Chinese, half German) and I had gone out to eat at a restaurant. We both find it easier to read from a menu that is on paper than on the wall so we took one of the menus at the front desk of the restaurant. As we reached out for it the owner pointed and said that’s an English menu. We actually were very pleased with this but the manager looked down at us as if to say ‘You’re Chinese, why can’t you read and speak Chinese fluently’.

InternChina – Me and Brigitte

When I was back in the UK and people asked me where I am from I would usually say my home town. But I do remember once when I had just started university, I gave someone this response and I was then laughed at! I found this strange as I never had this response before. My friends still laugh at this and bring it up to this day. Why can’t I say my home town? This is where I was born and where I spent most of my life growing up. When I’m in China and am asked where I am from I would say the UK. What are your opinions on this? Do I need to go that far back in my family history?

My ethnicity is Chinese and my nationality is British. If someone could please teach me how to say this in Chinese, I would be very grateful! 🙂

If you want to hear more stories about being a foreigner or Chinese foreigner in China or even experience this for yourself. Apply for an internship now! 

Cultural, How-to Guides, Things To Do in Zhuhai, Zhuhai InternChina Events

Tea tasting and Chinese Calligraphy Lesson

Hi! This is Sunny from Intern China Zhuhai Office. Last Wednesday, we organized a calligraphy lesson for our interns. The teacher is my friend who is interested in Chinese traditional culture so much and has been practising for more than 30 years.
When we arrived at his office, he showed tea culture to us first, we tasted 3 different of tea first, he showed us how to make Kongfu Tea (功夫茶) and how to taste it.

InternChina-Zhuhai-interns-tasting-traditional-Kongfu-Tea
InternChina- Zhuhai interns tasting traditional Kongfu Tea

KongFu tea, is not a name of a kind of tea but a drinking way and a culture. The procedures require skills and patience. These years it’s very popular in Japan and South Korea.

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InternChina- Traditional Kongfu Tea ceremony

“Wow, so good!”

After the Tea tasting, we started our calligraphy class.

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InternChina- Zhuhai interns getting a calligraphy lesson
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InternChina- The Zhuhai interns practicing their new calligraphy skills!
InternChina-A-traditional-Chinese-calligraphy-brush-pen
InternChina- A traditional Chinese calligraphy brush pen

Firstly ,the teacher briefed us the history of Chinese calligraphy. introduced us “文房四宝”( Four Treasures of Calligraphy)—笔(bǐ, brush-pen),

墨(mò,ink), 纸( zhǐ,paper), 砚(yàn,ink stone)

InternChina-Traditional-calligraphy-ink-stone
InternChina- Traditional calligraphy ink stone

笔(bǐ, brush-pen),how to handle a brush pen

 

 

Karl’s first time trying ,but she was good at it. Jamie is not too bad at it 🙂

This is me, not bad at all! Right?! For our office. You will see it when you come to Intern China’s Zhuhai office.

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InternChina-The Zhuhai office has some new calligraphy wall art!

I hear and I forget. I see and I remember. I do and I understand. Xunzi (荀子) 不闻不若闻之,闻之不若见之,见之不若知之,知之不若行之。学至于行而止矣。

Chun Lian (春联)

Suny
Intern China