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5 Mistakes never to commit in China

Popularity 20Viewed 7824 times 2014-3-25 04:10 |System category:News

1.       –Never say ''Ni hao’’

 

If all you know in Chinese is ‘ni hao’ and its half-exciting reply ‘ wo hen hao’, than it’s best you stay away from uttering these words. The minute you say ‘ni hao’ it is like a huge magnet that attracts and pulls the very Chinese out of them and they will start speaking at an insane pace, as though speaking Chinese is their birthright, they speak so fast all you hear is the ‘ma’ at the end of the sentence, but when you come to a place, say a restaurant, or something that resembles one and you say ‘hello’ instead of ‘ni hao’ they automatically try to find an English speaking Chinese from somewhere in their meagre stuff members. If they can’t find a translator for you they will speak slowly with plentiful body language so you can understand. Believe me I did the same mistake when I first landed in China and I was over-excited to be learning Chinese.

 

2.       –Don’t ever smile at a Chinese stranger

 

Ok this has some points to it. This only applies if you are a black woman smiling politely at a Chinese ‘xiaohuozi’ at McDonald’s. Let me tell you now beforehand, don’t! The minute you smile, it seems to appear as though you let your guard down and they take it as an invitation to come and chat you up. It’s not a bad thing, I mean every girl wants to get noticed now and then, but not if you are hungry, got only 15minutes before you must head back to campus for an afternoon class and all he seems to be saying is ‘’ Wo xiang ni’’. A sentence I later found out to mean ‘I want you’. No.

 

3.       –Never use a public toilet

 

Again this is only for my fellow ladies. Don’t get it twisted I won’t be discussing issues of hygiene here, I am from Africa, I’m in no place to judge. Here it is the uncomfortable position you have to get down into to handle your business, it’s torture on your quadriceps! And please pray you aren’t wearing skinny jeans coupled with 16’’ heels. If you think your bladder is strong enough to hold on than I suggest you do so till you get to your dormitory bathroom, but if you can’t than don’t wait until you are too pressed, you will surely regret it.

 

4.       –Don’t ever get into a cab without agreeing on a price

 

This might sound silly I know, but it might also probably be the biggest mistake you can ever make in China. Just because the standard price to go to Walmart is 15kuai doesn’t mean all cabbies will charge 15kuai, some will charge as much as 20kuai. So for the safety of your dear life negotiate with the cabbie before making use of his services, we all know Chinese men don’t play with their money and if it’s a lady, think twice, they are renowned for being ruthless. Another thing, don’t trust the meter either, because according to him “it’s broken”

 

5.       –Never get sick during a festive break

 

I don’t know if other cities in China also do this, but in Dalian there are two festive breaks each 10days long every school semester. One end of April and another, the Mid-Autumn festival later on in the year. Everything and I mean everything closes down during this breaks, from banks to hospitals. And it was the worst time of my life when I rushed my cousin in the wee hours of the morning to the hospital just to find out that there was no doctor on call. We were told to wait until the ten days were over before she could get medical attention, they wouldn’t even give her something for the pain. My advice? Take good care of yourself during any 10day break; don’t make the mistake of getting involved in a drunken brawl.

 

All the above points are from my own personal experience and many might not agree with them

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


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Reply Report ColinSpeakman 2014-3-25 04:40
The May holiday week and the October holiday week are pretty standard in Unis here. It is not necessarily connected with midAutumn festival as that moves around and can be a couple of weeks before the October break. It depends. Good advice in your post.
Reply Report Shaykahorere 2014-3-25 05:00
tell me Collin, how is it that you have so much knowledge about China?
Reply Report Shaykahorere 2014-3-25 05:00
ColinSpeakman: The May holiday week and the October holiday week are pretty standard in Unis here. It is not necessarily connected with midAutumn festival as that mo ...
tell me Collin, how is it that you have so much knowledge about China?
Reply Report ColinSpeakman 2014-3-25 05:03
Shaykahorere: tell me Collin, how is it that you have so much knowledge about China?
I have to look after American students here and tell them when their uni breaks are! Thank you for the compliment! :-)
Reply Report snowipine 2014-3-25 07:32
Want to find some points  so that I can have some adventages to debate with you, but I am regretable for my failure.

Good luck to you!
Reply Report voice_cd 2014-3-25 18:46
Thank you for sharing your story here. We have highlighted it to the homepage!
Reply Report objchina 2014-3-25 21:00
Shaykahorere: tell me Collin, how is it that you have so much knowledge about China?
Because he is now a Chinese...lol
Reply Report ColinSpeakman 2014-3-25 23:08
objchina: Because he is now a Chinese...lol
There is an expression some Chinese friends have used.. You are western on the outside, but Asian on the inside. I take that as a compliment .. but perhaps they are just referring to the Asian food I eat!
Reply Report objchina 2014-3-26 00:45
ColinSpeakman: There is an expression some Chinese friends have used.. You are western on the outside, but Asian on the inside. I take that as a compliment .. but pe ...
yes, because you are living in china,eat and drink in china.
Reply Report Shaykahorere 2014-3-26 02:34
ColinSpeakman: I have to look after American students here and tell them when their uni breaks are! Thank you for the compliment! :-)
you are making me want to know more than just basic fact about China
Reply Report Shaykahorere 2014-3-26 02:34
snowipine: Want to find some points  so that I can have some adventages to debate with you, but I am regretable for my failure.

Good luck to you!
sure couldn't find any? well thanks thn
Reply Report Shaykahorere 2014-3-26 02:36
objchina: Because he is now a Chinese...lol
    
Reply Report ColinSpeakman 2014-3-26 03:51
objchina: yes, because you are living in china,eat and drink in china.
But the drinks are coffees from Starbucks, Costa Coffee and Coffee bean - I should be turning Costa Rican!  
Reply Report ColinSpeakman 2014-3-26 03:52
Shaykahorere: you are making me want to know more than just basic fact about China
Good!  
Reply Report objchina 2014-3-26 04:55
ColinSpeakman: But the drinks are coffees from Starbucks, Costa Coffee and Coffee bean - I should be turning Costa Rican!   
Costa Rican is also alright for you.
Reply Report seanboyce88 2014-3-26 18:32
just as an aside, wo xiang ni, doesnt necessarily mean I want you, it can simply be I miss you. Also its surprising that you have to agreeprices, just tell them dabiaoba and they will run the meter, no agreeing
Reply Report story_of_time 2014-3-27 03:16
As I konw, some of youor points are not true. For example, during the festival of May 1st, most of the hospital will keep some doctors for the clinic, because my sister is also working as a doctor in a public hospital.
Reply Report Shaykahorere 2014-3-27 04:57
seanboyce88: just as an aside, wo xiang ni, doesnt necessarily mean I want you, it can simply be I miss you. Also its surprising that you have to agreeprices, just ...
now why would a stranger come up to me and say 'i miss you'? i know that 'wo xiang ni' has different meanings but in this case it will mean i want you, taking the situation and scene into consideration here. just saying, i love your input though, hala back!
Reply Report Shaykahorere 2014-3-27 04:59
story_of_time: As I konw, some of youor points are not true. For example, during the festival of May 1st, most of the hospital will keep some doctors for the clinic, ...
i guess it was my bad day then.
Reply Report LanaLiao 2014-3-27 05:33
Yeah, it's better for beginners of Chinese to  say "Hi" or "Hello" than "Ni hao" to strangers.

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  • No, I don't speak "Namibian" 2014-4-3 23:30

    objchina: YOU too,this article really made me proud as an African because of our diverse cultural background...our languages has better expressions than Englis ...
    or maybe a friend asked you to translate something funny you said in your mother tongue but you just can't or if you do it loses it's humor

  • No, I don't speak "Namibian" 2014-4-3 23:29

    objchina: YOU too,this article really made me proud as an African because of our diverse cultural background...our languages has better expressions than Englis ...
    i couldn't agree more, because there are just those small expressions you want to translate to English for the sake of your English speaking friends just to realize that English doesn't have such expressions or anything close to it. Damn

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