Today we have a guest post from Cleo of Booklopedia!
Between the ages of 10 and 13, I had the AMAZING opportunity to live in China for about 3 ½ years. I’m actually half Chinese and half Korean, so being able to live in the country that my dad grew up in was really cool, even though at first it took a lot of crying and thinking that my life sucked to get me to agree, although it was never my choice.
The reason why I had to move was because of my dad’s job. He started a business there and was always in China, so my parents decided that it would be right for the whole family to move to China, and that’s when my China adventure started.
I didn’t go to a regular Chinese school, where you supposedly had to go to school on Saturday and all that jazz, but an international school where I got to meet people from various cultures. I even met some of my best friends there, even though one of them is actually originally from California, just like me, and the other one lives in Pennsylvania, but I still have some from countries like Taiwan, Singapore, and Germany.
Visiting the Great Wall of China and the Terracotta Warriors were really cool experiences as well, and when you live in China, you go to these places so many times that you eventually get tired of them. For example, over the summer, we went back to visit China for my grandpa’s 90th birthday, and my sister’s friend came to visit us while we were there. She wanted to go to the Great Wall of China really badly, so we had to go, and let’s just say that after climbing that wall around 5 or 6 times, you get really tired of it.
We also got to celebrate the major holidays such as Chinese New Year, which we actually got a week-long vacation for. Fireworks would light up the sky and firecrackers could be heard in the background. It was a loud but insanely cool holiday, once you got past all of the noise of course.
A lot of people have this misconception that China is dirty and that the people are uncivilized… That’s basically all they see and hear. Most of it is true, like the streets could be a little cleaner and the people could stop littering and spitting on the sidewalk, but the culture is amazing and the people are incredibly nice. I remember waving to random people that were working on a construction site next to my school, and they would wave back smiling, totally making my day.
There was also this Ancient Cultural Street where you could get really cool Chinese arts and crafts, like edible sugar art and your name painted in a cool calligraphic way.
Overall, it was an incredible experience, and looking back, I thought I was incredibly dumb for crying those millions of times before I left to make the big move because when I had to move back to California, it was tears all over again. I would give like my left arm and right foot (of course I’m just kidding though ;) ) to go back to China and relive the experiences that I was lucky enough to have the opportunity to enjoy!
Thanks for that great post, Cleo! Your experiences in China sound fascinating!
To follow the rest of the event, go to our All Things Asian event page for all the posts and giveaways! Click HERE to see more awesomeness. (And no, you don't have to be Asian to participate!)