06 Jan Experiencing China
If you want a completely different and challenging experience, I have absolutely no doubt China is the best place for you! This past week has been crazy and Shanghai is fulfilling my expectations. I had been four months in Hong Kong so I already had an idea of how it is to live in China. However, it is still very different from Shanghai and it did not take me much time to realize that!
Arriving at the Shanghai airport from Hong Kong is incredible because, although the same country, you immediately realize it is another reality. I felt like I had finally arrived to China! Despite westernized, Shanghainese are much more “Chinese” and can give you a better perspective of what real China is.
I met the Absolute team and the other interns in our apartments, which are in the Old City and have really good conditions. Clean and modern rooms, a nice and cosy living room and a kitchen equipped with much of the thing you need. I am sharing an apartment with two other Shanghai interns, which is also great as you get the chance to learn many things about other cultures.
After unpacking our luggage and a quick rest, there was a welcome dinner with all the interns and with the Absolute Internship team here in Shanghai in a Chinese restaurant nearby. Despite not being the first time, I am still amazed about how different real Chinese food is from the one I am used to back home. And it is so much better! Besides, it was good to know all of them and I knew it was the beginning of good friendships. After the dinner, we headed to our first night out in Shanghai.
The Scavenger Hunt on our first Sunday here was a great opportunity to discover the city by ourselves. In teams of two, we had travel along the city and do as many different types of tasks as you can imagine, from riding a rollercoaster to taking a picture on the driver seat of a taxi. Definitely, a funny and interesting way to go to the most known places in Shanghai!
Finally, the big day arrived: the first day at work. Excited and nervous at the same time, I left home. The company’s office is in Pudong, in one of the tallest buildings, the Shanghai World Financial Centre. Fortunately, I felt welcomed by my colleagues and my supervisor. I am working with four other foreign interns, although we are the only non-local people. I got to know the place and my tasks, so finally I was ready to start.
At the end of the day, going back home by metro was also a kind of experience I had never had, even in Hong Kong. There are some many people at the rush hour that you literally go with the flow. Yet, it is something you can only experience in China! However, the metro system is really good and prepared for it.
Now, one week is gone and I am sure I chose the right place for the internship. I still cannot believe I am actually living in a city with more than twice the population of my home country, with a so different and interesting culture. I have already been to some local restaurants, pubs and also tried some typical Shanghainese things, like the Karaoke! I look forward to continue this amazing experience, to learn from it, and also to improve my Mandarin!