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Going to a foreign country

Popularity 1Viewed 4069 times 2014-2-24 22:00 |System category:Life| country, foreign, travel, China, Chengdu

I visited China three years ago and had a very good time.
I was expecting it to be very different from the United States, but I wasn't prepared for exactly what some of the differences would be. 
But when I first arrived,  I felt kind of nervous. I couldn't help but notice how strange some things seemed! The squat toilets at the Chengdu airport, the smog, and even the way the buildings looked was unusual. I had travelled to other countries before (Costa Rica, Mexico, Canada, Ecuador, Great Britain, Ireland, and Iceland) , but had never felt quite like that.  This was definitely somewhere very foreign.
We had a few hours to rest before my group and I left for dinner, so I tried to sleep. When I found myself unable to, I read a Science Fiction book I enjoyed. I talked to others about my nervousness. I may have even thought of a song I like called "I live One Day at a Time" to remind myself that I would be in China for ten days, and the time until I went home would seem longer if I didn't try to enjoy the trip. 
We had hotpot that night. I was so tired afterwards that I barely remember the drive back to the hotel. I hadn't slept well on the plane, and our flight had arrived in the morning. Needless to say, I fell asleep very quickly that night.
The next day was when I really began to enjoy my vacation. We went to the Chengdu Research Base of Giant Panda Breeding. Not only was I well rested and beginning to get used to what that part of China is like, but the research base itself did not seem very foreign. It reminded me of some of the American zoos I had been to! So, there was something almost familiar in the midst of all that was different. And I was actually out doing and seeing things instead of sitting in my room. There was no time to think of being homesick. That day, I stopped being nervous. I was gradually becoming used to China, so its differences were no longer surprising. I could relax and enjoy the experience!
I would love to go back to China someday. I want to see Shanghai, Hong Kong, and other places I haven't seen. When I went to Cuba last summer, I was not especially shocked by how different it was because it reminded me of Costa Rica and Ecuador. I had some idea of what differences to expect. I believe that when I return to China it will be the same way: many things that are strange to me will not be surprising. Next time, I will even enjoy my first day.

Has anyone else on this forum had a similar experience when traveling abroad?
If so, feel free to write about it in a reply.


(Opinions of the writer in this blog don't represent those of China Daily.)


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Reply Report voice_cd 2014-2-25 17:37
Thanks for sharing your story here! We have highlighted your story to the homepage.
Reply Report SoCalChevy 2014-2-25 17:55
Thanks!

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