7 lessons discovered FROM 3 MONTHS IN CHINA

Posted: 11/20/2014 | November, 20th, 2014

China is a interesting as well as quickly altering country. Old customs as well as routines hang on as contemporary skyscrapers go up every second, the country becomes a lot more of a worldwide powerhouse, as well as people from around the world step there. My good friend Scott Young, finest understood as a discovering hacker who discovered MIT’s entire computer science program in one year, stated to me, “I’m going to travel the world for a year as well as discover languages.” I was thrilled with the idea! Today, he shares what he discovered while living in China for three months — as well as exactly how the media portrays countries is commonly extremely wrong.

Recently my good friend Vat as well as I completed a three-month stay in China. The plan was, with very little preparation, to show up in China as well as speak as bit English as possible, in buy to discover Mandarin Chinese.

We shot a mini-documentary about the experience here:

The trip transformed my understanding of China, from the unfair picture it often has in the West. In this article, I want to share the greatest lessons I discovered about China, life, as well as travel from that experience.

1. when you’re thinking about the regional culture, people open up more

Originally Vat as well as I hadn’t organized on going to China at all. We were alerted that China may not be the very best location to satisfy friends, since people were unfriendly to Westerners. Instead, we were told to go to Taiwan.

Some visa issues made it impossible to stay the full three months in Taiwan, so we changed to a three-month stay in China at the last minute.

From the very first day I shown up in Kunming, I had my perceptions flipped. far from being insular as well as hostile to foreigners, people came as much as speak to me the very first time I went out on the street. It occurred to be all in Chinese, so I didn’t comprehend much, however it did cause me to rethink my assumptions.

As my Chinese improved, this continued throughout my stay, from my landlord introducing me to people who might assist us discover Chinese, to getting to understand the couple who ran a noodle restaurant nearby.

If you’re thinking about other people, their culture, as well as their language, they’ll be friendly to you. China isn’t an exception.

2. Don’t judge a country by its media coverage

Hating China is a prominent pastime of Western media. a few of the accusations are at least partially true: parts of China are rather polluted, political flexibility isn’t the exact same as in the West, the Web is firewalled, as well as some parts of China are rather poor.

I saw a extremely different type of China. Kunming, where I lived for a lot of of my stay, wasn’t polluted. I had frank conversations with Chinese people about communism, Tibet, as well as democracy. Some sites are blocked, however China has its own versions of YouTube, Netflix, eBay, as well as Google.

China is still developing, however the economic growth indicates that a lot of people have seen their living requirements enhance quickly in the last 20 years. people I spoken to were normally optimistic about the future.

3. whatever is food here

The connection with food in China is fascinating, as well as I was surprised at the diversity of components as well as flavors.

Western countries tend to simplify Chinese food down to chow mein, fried rice, as well as general Tso’s chicken. That’s a bit like stating Western cuisine is just burgers as well as sandwiches.

Chinese food in China, on the other hand, is a few of the most different food on the planet. Not only does regional diversity indicate food can modification totally from province to province, however almost every possible component discovers its method into some type of Chinese dish. Chicken, pork, beef, as well as vegetarian dishes are all options, of course, however where else can you eat fried insects, try stewed frog, or shop at a Walmart selling online turtles?

Food is likewise an avenue for connection. In the West, each private has his or her own plate, separate from others. In China, each person has a bowl of rice as well as eats directly from shared plates in the center. While this style of eating makes it difficult to dine individually in some restaurants, it produces a communal feeling, making food a lot more than just nutrition.

4. Chinese is both exceptionally fascinating as well as very difficult

I won’t lie to you, discovering Mandarin Chinese was a struggle. countless characters, with lots of nearly precisely alike. For example, try as well as area the difference between these two characters:

Chinese is a tonal language, which indicates that the intonation doesn’t just modification emphasis however likewise what words mean. My good friend went to a restaurant as well as attempted to buy “shui jiao” (boiled dumplings) however instead bought “shuì jIào」(眠りにつく)。


panda =“ bear cat”(xióngmao)

Chameleon =「Color Modification Dragon」(biànsèlóng)



















今、国家として数百年の歴史を持つ代わりに、あなたは数千人を持っていることを想像しています。 1つまたは2つの相互に理解できない言語の代わりに、数十、潜在的に数百がありました。今、あなたは現代の中国と同様に人口を4倍にします。



私は中国に最高の体験であり、心配を無料で提供することはできません。英語はまばらです。大都市での詐欺だけでなく、スリを楽しむための要件もあります。汚染は悪い場合があります。 Webはイライラする可能性があります。しかし、あなたが経験と、世界最大、最も古く、そしてすぐに最もパワーになる可能性のある潜在的にあなたの心を修正する可能性が必要な場合は地球上のゆったりとした国、私は自分自身を行くことを非常に提案します。

Scott Youngは、彼のブログScotthyoung.comでの学習、旅行、効率性について作曲しています。彼は複雑なものを取り入れたり、ルーチンを開発したり、シンプルでシンプルなものを発見しようとしたりします。

SkyscannerまたはMomondoを使用して、手頃な価格のフライトを発見してください。彼らは世界中のウェブサイトと航空会社を閲覧するため、私の2つの好ましい閲覧エンジンです。 Skyscannerから始めますが、彼らは最大のリーチを持っているので!




Shuyuan Worldwide Celebration Hostel(Xian)

Zishu Garden Inn(成長)







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