will need it... will need it...
louischuahm Mar 19, 2014 18:02 I am sitting at the airport waiting for my flight to Chongqing. After two and half months languishing in Guangzhou, I finally am going to teach. It's no mean feat for a non native, judging from the number of applications I sent out....close to a thousand.


The hit rate is 22 interviews both on the phone and Skype. And I only needed one...this one. Honestly, there were times I thought of giving up after getting negative interviews. I am.


As I sit here, I wonder how many FT passed by this airport connecting them to the city they will be teaching in. What were they thinking? Were they feeling excited that this new country will be what they perceived it? Or, are they filled with a sense of foreboding? I wonder...As I look back at the two years that I've been in Guangzhou, I realized how much I have changed.


My tolerance level has increased, perhaps it's because I turn a blind eye to those things that I don't want to see - abject poverty, scammers, walkers, women who will do anything for a buck.


I just hope that if and when I finally leave and go home, I dont bring back this attitude. Two years ago, I landed at this same airport, excited yet afraid because I worried about not fitting in, about the culture shock that was to come, my poor Chinese language handling....while Chinese was my second language in school, we hardly used it because all of us spoke English.


I hated Chinese language because it was very hard work understanding the strokes and different meanings each stroke can make a character change. Worst of all, I had to study Hanyu having to use it everyday I regret not preservering in it.


It took me all of two years to speak confidently with Chinese here. I have to say, learning Chinese isn't that difficult after all. I will be teaching Economics and some English lessons in Chongqing. Well, seriously, I am quite worried about students' language capability. If they can't speak properly, I worry how they are going to understand concepts and economic laws.


So, as they say, plunge in head first and you shall know. We'll see about that. Ok, flight time.....

Tags:Business & Jobs Expat Tales


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if you're ever headed to chengdu, let me know. i've been told girls in sichuan are ever prettier/prettiest. still shamefully materialistic, though.

May 07, 2014 10:51 Report Abuse



You in Chengdu? It's just 2 hours by train from where I am. Maybe this Dragonboat festival I just might just go there.

May 10, 2014 21:01 Report Abuse



I doubt we can meet. My work has got me booked during that holiday, because that's also Children's Day.

May 11, 2014 00:57 Report Abuse