How things have changed.
Last time I was starting a blog, it was August 2014. I was getting ready to spend a year in Beijing, studying Chinese at Peking University. “I’ll post as often as I can,” I had written, which quickly turned out to be a lie. Though I’m reluctant to make the same promise, I’m hoping that the different situation of this year means that I actually will post a bit more, and perhaps not even limited to my experiences here in China.
I graduated from Durham University with a degree in International Relations and Chinese in June 2016, and then immediately flew out to Beijing for a summer internship. After a visa run to Hong Kong, I arrived in Qingdao for a year of study on Tuesday evening, and today jumped straight into classes. Different place, different motivations, different understanding, different mindset, different haircut…
What has not changed is that I’m still learning Mandarin. Still. Four years later. It never ends, but in a good way (also sometimes in a confidence-smashing kind of way). Kerouac’s On the Road is still in its usual place on my bedside table.
For now, I’ll say ‘Welcome to Qingdao!’ and get back to my studying/blog planning/job searching.
(for reference, the blog in Beijing was bignewbeijing.wordpress.com. I’m going to try to do some blog-consolidation and put highlights of my previous travel blogs onto this site, but one thing at a time, ok?)