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MY LOVE HATE RELATIONSHIP WITH CHINA
upxed: August 20, 2019 by Dave And Deb

与中国有关的爱与恨



I will never forget my first day in China.As I stepped outside my hotel room for the very first time, I was hit by a waveof hot humid air.

我永不会忘记我来中国的第一天。当我第一次走出酒店房间,一股湿热的空气扑面而来。

It wasn’t the kind of heat that makes yousweat, but the kind that makes you question the level of oxygen in the air. Wasthere any? It was raining, the air was stuffy, grey, polluted.

这不是那种让你出汗的热,而是那种会让你感到窒息的那种热。这里怎会这样?因为雨水,闷热、灰暗、污染。

I questioned whether going outside was agood idea, but I was starving, so I decided to push through.

我怀疑走出去并不是个好主意,但是肚子饿啊,所以我心意已决。



Luckily, I didn’t have to walk far.
There was a sextion of 4-5 differentrestaurants, just 300m away from the hotel, all of which seemed perfectlysuitable for a quick bite to eat.

幸运的是,没走多远,离酒店大概300米左右远的地方,开着4、5家餐馆,像是有快餐的估计很快就能吃到。

I didn’t have time to sit down and dine instyle, so I opted for take-away.

我没有时间坐下来好好吃饭,所以我选择了打包。



It wasn’t working.

哎·~不管用呢。

“Da bao“ (take away in Mandarin) I kept repeating while pointing atthe food.

“打~宝,打~宝(普通话管外带叫打包)”我指着师傅不停滴重复说道。

Nothing.

没反应。

The second girl had joined the first girland they were now both pointing at me, talking in Mandarin, and laughing.

这时又一个女孩走过来和第一个女孩站在一起,她们边指着我,边用普通话说笑着。

I felt myself blushing. This wasembarrassing. I hung my head in shame and walked down the street to anotherrestaurant.

我感到自己的脸红了。尴尬四起。我羞愧地低下头,转身离开顺着街道走向下一家餐馆。

Despite my best efforts, the outcome wasthe same. And the restaurant after that. No luck!

在另一家餐馆。尽管我使出浑身解数,结果还是一样。倒霉!

No one seemed to understand what I wastrying to say.

似乎没人能听得懂我在说啥。



AT TIMES I REALLY HATED CHINA!

有时候我真讨厌中国



It made the world of a difference!

它创造了一个与众不同的世界。

At first, the language barrier was thebiggest source of my frustrations!

起初,语言是我感到沮丧的最大原因!

I was told it was possible to get by inShanghai without Mandarin.

有人跟我说,在上海不会讲普通话也是能混得下去的。

I was to stick to touristy areas, go toWestern shops, restaurants and clubs, and hang out with other expats.

但我只有去旅游景点,去涉外商店、餐馆和俱乐部,还有和其他外国人一起出去玩。



In just a few months, I was able orderfood, get around, go shopping, keep up a basic conversation, and feel like aself-sufficient member of society.

短短几个月后,我可以点餐、四处溜达、买东西、可以进行最基本的交流,感觉自己已融入了这里的社会。



Equipped with the basic knowledge ofMandarin, I became more curious and adventurous, pushing myself to exploreShanghai beyond the tourist sights and expat hangout areas.

会了些普通话的我,变得更好奇,更想去探险,驱使我去探索上海的景点和外国人的聚集区

When I finally gave up taxis and discoveredthe world of public transport, I was faced with what later became one of mybiggest

最终我忘掉了出租车,发现了公交汽车的世界,同时遇到了我以后在中国最具挑战最讨厌的事情之一

China pet peeves: THE QUEUES …or rather thecomplete lack thereof.

排队……或者更确切地说,不像排队的排队。



I wasn’t going to change their ways, so Ihad to adapt mine.

所以我不打算去改变他们的行事方式,改变的只有是我自己。



There were numerous other Chinese habitsthat I didn’t enjoy.

还有中国人其他的不少习惯我不太喜欢

There was that time when I saw a motherprop up her child, so he could proceed to defecate on the side of the street.

有次,我看到一位母亲照护她的孩子,在路边大便。

That quickly taught me to avoid childrenwho wore crotchless pants and the sides of the streets where the aforementioneddefecations would tend to occur.

这很快提醒了了我,不要让孩子穿开裆裤,同时避免在大街上两边出现上述问题。

Then there were times when I would slip ongiant spits on the sparkly floors of the, otherwise, completely pristineShopping Malls.

有时,我还会在那些购物中心铮铮发光地板上,踩到一滩呕吐物上滑倒。

It was a gross way to learn that Chinesespat everywhere.

中国人要知道随地吐痰是种不文明的方式。

Some believed it was unhealthy to swallowphlegm, but most just admitted to the fact that it was part of their culture.

有些人认为咽下痰是不健康的,但大多数人承认这是他们文化的一部分。

No one ever told them that it was rude andsocially unaccepted.

从来没有人告诉他们这是不文明的,在社会当中也是这样。

So they continued to spit and I tried mybest to avoid being spat on.

所以他们对吐痰毫无顾忌,我只好尽量躲开不被击中。

The excessive smoking in public areas, theloud conversations, the complete disregard of road rules, the starring, thepointing, and the “laowai” labelling (the slang term for foreigner) didn’t make it easy to love Shanghai.

频繁在公共场所吸烟,大声交谈,完全无视交通规则,张扬,指指点点,以及“老外”的标签都让人很难爱上上海。

But despite all of that, I still did!

但尽管如此,我还是习惯了。



A few months after my arrival, I rented anapartment that I shared with an American drama student and a Chinese ITdeveloper.

来到中国几个月后,我和一名美国戏剧专业的学生,还有一名中国IT开发人员合租了一套公寓。

We bought kitchen wares, linens, adopted akitten and called it our home.

我们买了厨具,几床被,养了只猫,把这里称之为我们的家。

We hired an “ayi” (literally translated asauntie a.k.a maid) that helped us clean the house and cooked the mostincredible meals for the price of just a few dollars.

我们只花了几美元雇了一个“阿姨”。她帮我们打扫房间,做了最好吃的饭菜。

I loved ayi. Not because she eliminated thehouse chores, but because she helped me experience Chinese food culture.

我爱阿姨。她不仅帮我们省去了家务活,还让我体验到中国的饮食文化。



For me, no other food scene will evercompare to the food scene in Shanghai. (Bold statement, I know!)

对我来说,没有任何其他美食能与上海的美食环境相比。(大胆声明,我知道!)



I used to love spending my weekends roamingaround Shanghai. I was living and working there, but I felt like I was still abackpacker.

我喜欢在上海的周末游荡。虽然我在那里生活和工作,但我觉得自己仍是一个路人。

Traveling, exploring, learning.

旅行、探索、学习。

It was one of my favourite things aboutShanghai. I could spend my week working 9-5 and living a regular life, and myweekends roaming around small hidden alleyways in the city, where life couldn’tfeel any more different from my 9-5 routine.

这是我最喜欢上海的地方之一。我可以用一周的时间朝九晚五地工作,过着有规律的生活,周末游走于城市里大家小巷,这里的生活和我一天的生活没什么不同。



Somewhere between Yongkang Lu and YongfuLu, between the best street food, thenext free cocktail, and that cute guy chatting me up on the curb outside of TheApartment bar.

在永康路和永福路之间,一边是美味的街头小吃,一杯免费的鸡尾酒,一边是那个在公寓酒吧外和我聊天的帅哥。

I used to look around at my life and feelincredibly lucky to be young and single in the city, as alive and vibrant asShanghai!

我曾回想我的生活,对于一个城市中年轻单身人来说,感到不可思议地幸运,就像上海一样充满活力。



But after a while, the party life lost itsappeal.

但过了一段时间,派对生活对我已失去了吸引力

The expat community started to feel toosmall.

有些外国人开始抱怨这里的世界太小了。

In the city of 14 million people, the300,000 foreigners all seemed to somehow know each other.

在这座拥有1400万人口的城市里,30万外国人似乎都以某种方式相互认知。

At times, it was just like living back inCanada, in the small town of Waterloo, where everyone went to the same bars,hung out with the same people, and had the same terrible luck in dating.

有时,这就像生活在加拿大的滑铁卢小镇一样,每个人都去同一个酒吧,和同一个人一起出去玩,约会时也会遇到同样的尴尬。

Except for one big difference.

除了一个很大的不同

Here, every other weekend, you were invitedto a good-bye party. One by one, my friends would throw in the towel and callit quits.

在这里,每隔一个周末,你都会被邀请参加一个告别聚会。朋友们一个接着一个地走开,就此相互别离。

Some moved elsewhere in Asia, while otherspacked up their bags and moved back to their home towns in Europe or NorthAmerica.

有些人去了亚洲其他地方,而有些则收拾好行囊,回到欧洲或北美的家乡。

There were new people arriving every week,but after a while, I no longer had the interest nor the desire to go throughany more friendship cycles.

每周都有新朋友来,但过了一段时间,我再也不想去经历这种认识新朋友尔后别离的循环。



After 8 months of fascination and adorationof life in Shanghai, my love for the city started to fade.

经过8个月对上海生活的迷恋和喜爱,我对这座城市的爱开始消退。

The spitting and shitting, the shoving andpushing, the pollution, the work ethics, and all other cultural differenceswould annoy me more and more with every passing day.

随地吐痰、拉屎、推搡、污染、职场潜规则以及所有其他的文化不同都让我感觉一天比一天烦恼。

I craved something new, somethingdifferent.

我渴望一些新的东西,一些不同的东西

There were still 100 other places I wantedto visit in China, but my heart just wasn't in China anymore.

这里还有100个我想探索的地方,但我的心已经不在中国了。



And for that, I will always be grateful toChina!

为此,我将永远感激中国