Date 19th May 2012.It’s now almost more than month for us to be back in our country to India. It was full one year assignment that we had in China. And we enjoyed our Life In China. Coming to China was also excited . Last early December (2011) I was seeing movie ‘American In China’ which was pictured in Shanghai. I just wished that maybe I can see such a cosmopolitan city.
I knew going to china is not an executable plan. But in next week we got opportunity to go Shanghai, China for one year. Doesn’t it sound ‘dream comes true’ ;)We were not knowing anything about china except it’s famous cuisine and my favorite Chinese cuisine. Also Feng Shui which is very popular in India. From our leads already there we came to know that everything is available there in city so no worry. This was first travel for both of us to outside India. So excitement was quite obvious.
1) Shanghai is one of the best Cosmopolitan cities in the world.
2) The city will be much chillier than India
3) The food will be available of our taste as we love Chinese cuisine.
And after that we were totally ready for exploring a new country which is not much exposed to world though it gives a tough stand in world.
We landed in February 2011 there and as expected it was 2 degree Cent. From Pudong International Airport to our Apartment in Biyun Lu, Pudong we saw Maglev, subway with advanced metros, clean and hygienic roads , greats cars and a unknown language all around. Our stay was arranged by our Company at Biyun Lu in Pudong area the area most preferred by all foreigners’.
About Shanghai: Shanghai looking back is having an age of 10+ years when government started developing it like Face of China. Beijing being capital of country, Shanghai is the business capital. Shanghai financial center is the tallest most building in Shanghai is visible almost from all corner of the city. The city is very well connected with metro and other transport services. Pudong and Puxi being two part of Shanghai which are divided by river Huangpu. Temperature of city varies from 30C to -5. July is the hottest and December the coldest month. Though the weather being the most unpredictable in Shanghai.
Language: To the people it’s 99% Mandarin and in public area written English and Chinese can both be seen. Preparation is must if you are stepping out and don’t know language. So either has proper company to go with or gather all information about the transportation, way to destination and back to source.Though you can easily find many western people around speaking Chinese. Careffore being the most popular multiplex to buy all your need.
About People and Culture: With the first took you will realize that shanghai is fully trended with westernization. After a year experience I found people being very helpful and cooperative. If I talk about my work colleagues they had always tried expressing themselves with their little knowledge to English . But it expects a lot of patience from the other end. With was fruitful for us later as we started understanding each other very well. Also being the world’s largest population the city is always crowded.
At work premises: First day of work was very exciting as we were surrounded with all our colleagues’ with totally different race but working in same work environment. The most unexpected thing was an office premise which was exactly same like we have back in Chennai in India. This made us feel homely as we entered the office. But there was some difference likes the chair were decorated with different styles of comfortable cushions. The desk was decorated with many items, series of tea, water bottle from Lock n Lock, and some kind of flowers, seeds and leaves to flavor warm water in winters. We were told it is all very healthy and good for throat. Next comes with lunch time.
Some fact revealed: No existence of milk tea only green tea, more comfort at office premises like taking a short nap after lunch time and china Chinese cuisine is 180 degree different in all dimensions to Indian Chinese cuisine and no vegetarian in country. As being vegetarian we are having options of plain bread, and boiled vegetable prepared on special order.
The people were helpful and cooperative at work while discussing, chatting, talk as because of language but the best part is they are always ready to learn this language. But still u will find many people quite skilled to it.
Around Shanghai: Moving around shanghai was a quite exciting as with the sense that we don’t know the language. But with interactive maps, simplified transportation and with little initial goggling can lead you any place in shanghai very easily. Taking taxi initially was a problem as it’s difficult to let driver understand the destination. But with little practice to names we later were able to guide drivers.
Point to Note: keep a subway map always with you in both language, keep a number of some localized friend who in case of any problem can help on phone, take all information of road, ways and place before moving to it. This can be done through internet, friends. Carrying shanghai travel card is very convenient while traveling. I really appreciate shanghai subway the way they bind the city so well.
You all must be seeing all travels which we had covered in China
Finally, if you want to see the places around China, then check out the links above and do not forget to pack your food.(For vegetarians 🙂 )
Have you been in such Culture or Country? Tell us about some of your favorite (or least-favorite) experiences.