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1.THINGS FOREIGNERS DO IN CHINA
After all these years in China, I have noticed that laowai (foreigners) tend to do some things that define their life in China. Today I want to talk about some things that most foreigners do in China but I, for some reason, haven’t.

在中国生活了这么多年之后,我发现外国人在中国的生活方式有很多变化。今天我想谈谈大多数外国人在中国喜欢做的、但出于某种原因我没有做的一些事情。



– Teaching English

-教英语

It is said that it is very easy to work in China as an English teacher. If you search on the Internet you will find many websites and forums with job offers for foreigners interested in teaching here. Some people come to China without a job and manage to find a teaching position in no time.

据说在中国当英语教师很容易。如果你在网上搜索,你会发现许多网站和论坛都会提供给有兴趣在这里教书的外国人工作。有些人来到中国没有工作,很快就能找到一个教师的职位。

I wrote “It is said” at the beginning because I don’t have first hand experience in this: I have never taught English in China (unfortunately? luckily?). And for anyone thinking, “But how could you teach English, anyway? It is not your native language!”, it seems that being a native speaker is not a requisite in many places. I do have a diploma to teach Spanish, but I have never had the chance to use it either. Last year when I was looking for a job I tried to find a position teaching Spanish, but luckily I found something else. I don’t know if I have what it takes to be a teacher.

我在开头写“据说”,是因为我没有这方面的亲身经历:我从来没有在中国教过英语(不知道是不幸还是幸运)。有人会认为:“你怎么能上去就教英语?这不是你的母语啊!”,因为在中国许多地方,似乎母语并不是硬性要求。我有教西班牙语的证书,但我从来没有机会去用它,我去年想找一份教西班牙语的工作,但幸运的是我找到了别的工作。说实话,其实我不知道我能不能当好一个老师。

What would I do if someone slept in my class??

如果有人在我教课的时候睡觉,我该怎么办?

– Being on tv

-上电视

Many foreigners in China, especially if they can speak fluent Chinese, appear in Chinese tv shows. I have never been on tv, at least not in a way that I was clearly recognizable. Once there was a scholarship ceremony award in my university in Beijing where I had to dance and playback a short piece of Chinese opera and I was told it would be on tv, but I don’t know if it was actually broadcasted. What I mean is, I have never been on tv speaking and showing my full face. Just a couple of months ago I had a chance, though: I was offered to participate in 非诚勿扰, a very popular dating show. They said it didn’t matter that I have a boyfriend as everything is prepared and there is a scxt, but I turned it down anyway. I hate seeing myself on video! And imagine that someone from C.’s family was watching tv and suddenly saw me looking for a boyfriend!!

许多在中国的外国人,尤其是能说一口流利中文的,经常出现在中国的电视节目中,我从来没有上过电视,至少在某种程度上没明确上过电视节目。曾经有一次,我不得不在我在北京的大学举行的颁奖典礼上跳舞,并且表演一段中国戏曲,虽然有人告诉我这段会在电视上播出,但我不知道它是不是真的播了。我的意思是,我从来没有在电视上讲过话、露过脸。几个月前,我被邀请参加一个非常受欢迎的相亲节目——非诚勿扰,他们说我有男朋友没关系,因为一切都准备好了,并且节目剧本也写好了,但我还是拒绝了,因为我讨厌在这样的视频上看到我自己!想象一下c.的家人正在看电视,突然看到我在找男朋友会是什么表情!



– Driving an electric bike

-骑电车

Many foreigners that plan to stay in China for a long time buy an electric bike, as you don’t need a driving license and they are a fast way to get around the city. Even my ex boss had one! He was 1.80 meters tall and at least 110 kg. You should have seen him riding that tiny scooter! It looked like something out of a cartoon!

许多计划在中国待很长时间的外国人都会买一辆电动自行车,因为你不需要驾照,而且这是环游整个城市的一种便捷方式。甚至我的前老板也有一个!他身高一米八,体重至少110公斤,你们真该看看他骑小摩托车的样子!它看起来就像卡通片里的东西!

I wouldn''t mind having an electric bike as cool as this though!
我很乐意有一辆这么酷的电动车!

– Wearing a qipao

-穿旗袍



Thailand is a popular holiday destination for the foreigners living in China. It is not too far, it is not too expensive, you don’t need a visa, tourism is very developed, there are beaches and parties… I have never been there. It is not that I don’t want, it’s just that I never had the chance. Friends and plans made me go to other places instead. But Thailand is on my to go list!

泰国是居住在中国的外国人的热门度假地。它不是太远,也不是太贵,你甚至不需要签证,泰国旅游业非常发达,还有海滩和聚会...我从来没有去过那里,不过不是我不想,而是从来没有机会。计划赶不上变化,但是泰国是我想去的国家之一!

There surely are more popular-among-foreigners activities that I have never done (like getting drunk on baijiu, or getting drunk at all!) but those are the most relevant, I think. What about you? Any popular activities in your country that you haven’t done (yet)?

在中国肯定有外国人更喜欢做的事情,我从来没有做过(比如喝白酒,或者干脆喝醉!)但我认为这些是最贴近的。你呢?你们国家有没有什么受欢迎的活动你还没有参加过?

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2.MY FAVOURITE WINTER FOOD

我最喜欢的冬季食物

It’s winter. It is cold outside and you feel like eating warm and comforting foods. It is the perfect time to enjoy a delicious hot pot!

现在是冬天,外面很冷,你想要吃温暖舒适的食物的话,就是享受美味火锅的最佳时机!

The hot pot is not a kind of food, but a way of preparing food. In hot pot restaurants, food is brought raw to your table and you cook it yourself in your boiling soup pot. In some restaurants there is a big pot for your whole table (up to 4 or 6 people) and in others each person gets their own private small pot. The shared pots usually are divided in two or three sections so you can boil your food in different soup flavours (spicy, pork bone, mushrooms, seafood… you name it). For the small private pots, you choose the soup you want.

火锅不是一种食物,而是一种烹饪方式。在火锅店里,生的食物放到你的餐桌上,你自己把它们放进沸腾的汤锅里煮。在一些餐馆一桌可以容纳多达4或6人,桌子中间有一口大锅,其他人每个人都有自己的私人小锅。公用的锅通常被分成两到三部分,这样你就可以用不同的汤来煮你的食物(辣的,猪骨的,蘑菇的,海鲜的...任何你能想到的)。而你自己的小锅,你可以选择你想要的汤。



Thinly sliced beef and lamb are usually the stars of hot pot restaurants, but there are many other things you can eat: fish balls, seafood, any kind of vegetables and mushrooms, dumplings, noodles, eggs, tofu…

牛羊肉薄卷通常是火锅店最受欢迎的食物,但是你还可以吃到很多其他的东西:鱼丸,海鲜,任何种类的蔬菜和蘑菇,饺子,面条,鸡蛋,豆腐...

When the soup starts boiling you can start pouring things into the pot. Don’t put too many things at the same time or the soup will stop boiling and they will take a long time to become cooked! Potatoes and mushrooms will take longer to cook, meat and leafy veggies will only need a few seconds. And when they are ready it’s time to dip them in sauce and start eating!

当汤开始沸腾时,你就可以开始往锅里倒东西了,不要同时放太多的东西,否则汤会停止沸腾,而且要很长时间才能煮熟!土豆和蘑菇需要很长的时间才能煮熟,而肉类和多叶蔬菜只需要几秒钟。当一切准备好的时候,就可以把它们浸在酱汁里开始吃了!

Some restaurants have a sauce bar and let you choose all the sauces you want; others only allow you to choose one sauce. Chinese people usually add cilantro to their sauces, and the most popular sauces are sesame and peanut.

一些火锅店里有酱料台,让你自主选择你想要的酱料,而有的火锅店只允许你选择一种酱料。中国人通常在他们的酱里加香菜,最受欢迎的是芝麻酱和花生酱。

The hot pot is believed to originally come from Mongolia but there are not historic proofs to refute this. However, when I started learning Mandarin, I remember we studied the word 火锅 huoguo (hot pot) in the first year and the teacher, a lovely man from Xi’an, translated it as “Mongolian pot”.

据说火锅被认为最初来自蒙古,但没有历史证据来证明这一点。当我开始学习普通话的时候,我记得我们在第一年学习了火锅这个词,一个来自西安的可爱的老师把它翻译成“蒙古锅”。

The first time I tried hot pot was during my first semester in Beijing. There was a very famous hot pot restaurant close to our university and it was very popular among students because it was dirt cheap and also because beers and icecreams were free. Obviously, that place was always packed! At that time I could hardly speak any Mandarin or use chopsticks properly and my Korean classmate patiently taught me all the secrets of hot pot.

我第一次尝试吃火锅是在我在北京学习的第一个学期。在我们大学附近有一家非常有名的火锅店,因为非常便宜,而且啤酒和冰淇淋都是免费的,所以它在学生中很受欢迎。显然,那个地方总是人满为患!那时我几乎不会说普通话,也不会正确地使用筷子,我的韩国同学耐心地教我火锅的所有秘诀。

I love eating hot pot in the winter because it is so warm! Having the boiling soup right in front of you makes you almost forget you don’t have heating at home (if you live south of Nanjing!).

我喜欢在冬天吃火锅,因为它太治愈人心了!把热气腾腾的汤放在你面前,你几乎忘记了你家里没有暖气(如果你住在南京南部的话)!