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Chinese culture is not wrong, just different

Tuesday, Oct. 5, 2010

It has been almost a month since I have arrived in Shanghai. As soon as
I got off the plane at Pudong International Airport, the humidity and
heat stuck me. The weather here is very different from the Bay Area back
home. As preparation for my study abroad, I attended a talk called
“Cultural Shock and Transitional Issues” during my first week here.
One main point I took away from the talk was that the Chinese culture is
“not wrong, just different.” Being in a different environment, it is
easy to compare it with what we are use to. However, who is to say what
is right and what is wrong, it is just different.

With those words, it is important to keep an open mind. Keeping an open
mind and trying to get to know the culture with a welcoming thought
makes the experience a whole lot better.  Thus, I began to explore the
city with a different mindset.

       As I started to adjust to the new environment, I also had
transitional issues. Getting use to weather, food, and people here took
a few weeks. For example, the traffic and walking on the streets took a
while to get use to. Because Shanghai is one of the biggest and most
developed cities in China, the population and traffic are also in great
numbers. A difference I have noticed between Shanghai and California is
that many travel by bikes and motorcycles. These bikes and motorcycles
turn corners quickly, so walking on the sidewalk and crossing streets
require extra attention.

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Tags: Annie Deng (China)

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