Adjusting to Beijing

大家好! (Hello Everyone!)

I just finished my third week of school, and I’ve officially been in Beijing for about 1 month. I can’t believe how quickly time is flying!

I remember one of my fears before coming to China was that I would not be able to adjust to my environment. I’ve had experiences in the past where adjusting to life in a completely different environment was very difficult and thought that China might be similar. (Logically, with two different environments would not be too similar, which turned out to be the case.)

When I initially came to China, there some incidents that were difficult to handle. One of the most common incidents in China that bothered me was the invasion of my personal bubble. One time, when I was at the Forbidden City, I was using the restroom, and one of the workers opened the door. Instead of saying sorry, she said in a harsh tone to hurry up and get out. I was completely shocked. Later on though, I noticed that some public restrooms do not have doors on them and people were fine using them. This is something that is hard to swallow at first, but I had to remind myself I am in a completely different country, and what I think is “normal” may not always be the same here in China. Actions I perceive as rude may actually not be rude. At first whenever people bumped in to me without saying excuse me (which is pretty much everyday), I would be annoyed, but now not so much. :)

-Jen