Leaving Mainland China behind...

As all the good things are three I’m yet again in the overnight train travelling from A to B in China. This time to Shenzhen where I will leave mainland China for Hong Kong.
Time is running so fast. I can’t believe the one month visa I got for China is due to expire on Sunday. One month! I’m already travelling for nearly one month! It feels like yesterday, that my friend Ines was picking me up from the Underground Station in Beijing and we drove off to hers on the scooter. 

Ines and me (her scooteer obviously looked a bit different hehe)

‘Gosh, what a traffic and pollution here’, I was thinking. I used to live in London, so I was used to busy traffic and a lot of people, but Beijing was different. That day Beijing for me was noisy and stressful with just too many things I had to pay attention of. Cars crossing the street even though they had a red light, buses, cars and especially motor bikes honking all the time, which made me startling up a lot and so on and so on. Luckily I got used to it quite fast and soon adopted the Chinese way of dealing with the high volume of traffic. Means walking towards the other end of the junction as far as I could and stopping somewhere in the middle to let cars pass before crossing the last bit as soon as the traffic lets me. Below a few examples:

I soon made friends with Chinese people. Michelle, who approached me at some underground station in Beijing and invited me to her home to have lunch with her family. Stephany, who helped me buying a typical Rou jia mo burger on Muslim street and invited me to her hometown in Chongqing.

Stephany & me

Jolly, the best friend of Stephany, who hosted me in Kunming and took me to have dinner with her and some friends.

Jolly & me

And last but not least Sissy and Alex, the students I became friends with in Yangshuo. They took me to the cinema, so that I could watch my first ever movie with Chinese subtitles haha and were so interested in German culture and lifestyle. It’s not the sights that will last it’s those moments you have with people, that will last.

Overall I’m glad I made the decision to travel China. I’ve seen a lot of traditional buildings in Beijing and danced with nearly 100 random Chinese people on a square in Xi’an. I saw Panda Bears chewing on bamboo in Chengdu and had so much fun, when Jolly (the Chinese girl I stayed with in Kunming) took me for dinner with 7 of her friends. I went to see a cave in Guilin to find myself in a different (fairy tale) world and I volunteered at the Zhuoyue English College in Yangshuo to help the students speaking more English. They basically come from small towns, where they don’t get the opportunity to speak with foreigners, so they were really interested in having conversations with me.

I’m impressed how welcoming people over here in China are. Even though they don’t have much money, they would invite you to their house for food. They’re also so interested in European culture and especially German products. They appreciate the quality of German products and of course cars. For them it’s the non-plus-ultra to drive a BMW or Audi. However, German cars are really expensive here. Depending on the model sometimes triple the price than in Germany.

As already mentioned in the beginning I’m currently on the way to Hong Kong and will be arriving there in a couple of hours. I know Hong Kong is way different than mainland China, which makes me way excited.


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