This is just a mash-up of associated thoughts I had of China during my free time during my business trip
For a Westerner living in China, it’s difficult, you struggle to speak the language so it’s hard having friends here. Personally I could get around Beijing fine, but for those tourist types that don’t speak a word of Chinese, you’re really screwed. Ordering food would be impossible, likewise getting taxis, getting around, directions everything. China isn’t one of those places friendly to foreigners. I also will add, good luck finding Western food in China, if you want Mickey D’s every meal, good on ya, but good pizza isn’t easy to find.
Throw yourself into the culture here, you have no choice, because you’ll either sink or you’ll thrive. I don’t really think there’s a middle ground here, then again, China is a land full of contradictions.
As an Asian-looking foreigner, I find it funny being insulted in the streets, I’ve been pushed around by a couple of twats once, calling me a chunzhu (idiot I think), he got what he deserved, and the cut on my lip that won’t heal and the bruising speaks for itself as to how it ended.
I don’t really recommend living here long-term without understanding either the culture or the language. My lecturer believes in knowing both, and maybe looking Asian means that I have to, but in general, if you can speak the language you should be fine. Likewise, if you don’t know the language but understand the culture, you can understand why things are what they are here.
If you’re white, then you have to go clubbing at least once. Even if you’re 15, as long as you’re white you’ll get in. And trust me, being white opens doors, free drinks, free entrance, people want to chat with ya.
China is a society based around a sense of unity and collective power, BULLSHIT, as I said, as I was getting beat-up, no-one stepped in for at-least a minute, about 5 seconds of which involved me getting my arse kicked. Plus, people don’t care about others in the country. Maybe my view is clouded a little because of my experiences, but that’s my view.
China’s air isn’t that bad, I was expecting to look like Darth Vader (which would be cool because my breathing is as loud as Darth Vader’s) because of the heavy-duty masks, but it hasn’t been bad.
It’s fucking cheap here, as long as you eat Chinese foods.