For years, China has been closed to foreign travel. Individuals were welcome to come by invitation only. In the early 1980’s China cautiously opened the gates to individuals and tour groups. Twenty nine years later, the Chinese world has changed immensely. The image of a paradise of hardy peasants and sturdy workers uniformly clothed in blue, fashioning a brave new world has changed with the addition of middle class shops with Channel perfume and Polo shirts, a fledging stock exchange and private enterprise; Chinese cinematic productions sweeping up awards in Europe, Chinese rockers performing on Chinese MTV, a fast food revolution spawned by McDonald’s and KFC and karaoke which has set the whole of China singing. China has opened up to the world. Most people find visiting, living or working in China an exciting and enriching experience.
Living in China
Living in China can be exciting and stimulating, but it can also be confusing, frustrating, even overwhelming. Culture shock is a condition that affects even the experienced overseas resident. It’s a form of psychological stress experienced when familiar cues or patterns are no longer present. These cues include the many ways in which individuals orient themselves to the requirements of daily life. The lack of familiar cues may cause discomfort, often accompanied by irritability, resentment, homesickness and depression. Culture shock may be mild or severe. It may be fleeting or last several months. Most foreigners experience culture shock to some degree at some stage of living overseas.
It is important to be familiar with the symptoms of culture shock. When the strain of adjusting to change is marked, a number of physical and emotional reactions are common. These include sleepiness, apathy, depression, compulsive eating and drinking, homesickness, exaggerated yearning for all things and friends back at home, negative stereotyping of Chinese people, a decline in efficiency, recurrent minor illnesses,
and obsession with cleanliness or health.
As may be true for many counties, one’s perception of China and the actual reality are very different. Although a communist country, China has the feel of being the developing economic giant that it is. The infrastructure of the country is good, virtually all imported goods are available and there are few restrictions on travel. The environment is safe and the people are friendly and warm.
Living in Jilin City
The programs are located across China and the climate varies accordingly. Generally the weather in summer is hot and humid with evening and early morning rain during July and August.
Downtown Jilin City