Being here has allowed me to determine my future on my own terms and shown me the freedom of freelancing.
Being only half fluent in Mandarin has meant that I have had to develop a certain agility of mind to figure out daily obstacles – things as basic as knowing which bus station you need, how to order food and identifying landmarks to meet a date.
We do our own research and figure things out by just doing them, finding help independently when we need it.
By now we have settled in and learned a lot about life in Beijing.
In China, there is a special word for this: guanxi.This was not our first international move, and it will not be our last.The way we move across countries, actually continents, is pretty much on our own, without the support of a big company that sends us on an all-expenses-paid 3-year assignment with return ticket.It’s an exotic state of mind but personally I am fond of the idea of meeting women from Korea, Japan, the US and all over as well as navigating the dangerous waters of the Chinese dating scene.I’ve also made friends with people from around the world with whom I share a sense of international camaraderie. The sense of making a life for yourself In Beijing, with the relative wealth of being an expat and the advancement of social and professional circles, the feeling of having had made a life for yourself is palpable. It’s going from living in a tiny, squalid hovel, trying to save money, for seven months, and then finding accommodation seven times larger.The added bonus with being in Beijing and not that place is that they can have cheap sex, eliminating the need for the arduous task of dating, and at the end of the day they don’t turn into donkeys.