In today’s guest post, we hear from Emma, who is one of my all-time favourite travel buddies! I met Emma nearly three years ago when we both were living and teaching English in Thailand. We ventured all around Thailand, Vietnam, Munich and she’s even come to visit me in Ireland. Dedicated traveller! Most recently, Emma’s been living and teaching English in China, an experience most of us will only ever dream of. She shares the highs and lows of her time in China below. Enjoy!
Good aspects of living in China
Hauangshan Yellow Mountain
It was during the time of the G20 Summit, fake blue skies and national holidays. Yes, you read that right. Fake blue skies but that’s another story… Asia is kind in its national time off. That basically meant travels were on the agenda for overworked Teacher Emma. I started teaching at the beginning of the Summer Course, which meant 6 weeks of working 6 days a week. Yes, Hell is real and it was burning a hole in the office of EFHangzhou 1. So when the time came for 4 days off, I wasted no time in researching national parks. I was in desperate need of some fresh mountain air and not a skyscraper in sight.
Saving in China
Bad aspects of living in China
Ok, You’ve had the good, let’s take it down a notch to the bad points of living and working in China. One thing I wish I had known before I got on that plane was how unsociable my hours at the learning center would be. After the summer, I went down to working 5 days a week with 2 days off (Weds/Thurs) you’ll find this is very much the norm of a typical LC in China. I was teaching til 8/9pm most days and when it came to the weekend, it was 10-12 hour days.
The other ugly parts of China I experienced were Chinese Hospitals and Zoos. I got really ill, to the point I had the strange experience of the whole process of a Chinese hospital. From getting a ticket to line up for a blood test in front of hundreds of people, to self-printing my own x-ray from machines in a hallway. It was strange, awkward and a bit cold.