Lessons that I Learned in my visit to China : Abhik Raj Shrestha

Published Date: January 23, 2018

We had visited China not too long ago in the month of September. It was technically my second international flight however, it was the first time I was visiting another country without my parents. We the tenth grader students along with the teachers spent nine days in China. I personally was really excited for this trip and was looking forward to it. We visited many places in China within these days in Beijing and Shanghai. The Great Wall of China, Temple of Heavens, and Disneyland were some of the major highlights in our trip.

China is a fascinating and rapidly changing country. Old customs and habits hang on as modern skyscrapers go up every second; the country becomes more of a global powerhouse.

While in our trip to China I learned a handful lessons. Some of them are listed below:

  • Once you’re interested in the local culture, people open up –

We are originally warned that China is not the best place to go for a visit. We are told that   people are unfriendly and are usually rude to foreigners. However, this was proved wrong as the Chinese people were really friendly with us. Even though they didn’t really understood English they helped us with the various translators, which lead me to my second point.

  •  Always carry a translator –

People in China are very respectful towards their country. They only speak their own native language which means not even the minority of the people understands the language English. So you need a translator wherever you go.

  •  Everything is food here –

The relationship with food in China is fascinating and I was amazed at the diversity of ingredients and flavors.  Even though for a majority of the time we had Indian cuisine we also got a chance to eat Chinese food. While a lot of my friends disliked the Chinese, I actually enjoyed the Chinese cuisine.

  •  You can count to 10 with one hand –

The language difference even extends to simple gestures. The Chinese, for example, have a system of gestures for counting all the way up to 10 with just one hand. As said before the Chinese people do not understand the gestures we use for numbers. While 1 to 5 is what you’d expect, 6 to 10 are the gestures you do from a single hand as well and they fascinate you.

  •  Use your haggling skills –

Outside of chain store and boutiques, it is totally possible to practice your haggling skills. Never accept the marked price or first price offered. With a shrewd negotiation, it’s possible to get souvenirs and such for a fraction of the quoted price.

  • Get a VPN for China –

When you visit China keep in mind that their “Great Firewall” blocks sites such as Facebook, Twitter,  YouTube,  Instagram and most of the Google selection.  If you want to access these while you’re in China you’ll need a VPN app.

  •  Taking photos in China –

The Chinese love to take photographs, and don’t be surprised if a local tried to snap a sneaky photo of you or even comes up to ask for a picture with you.

These were some of the lessons that I learned in my visit to China.

–          Abhik Raj Shrestha