Working in China – My Experience in China 5
Yesterday was my first day working in China and I also met with my Chinese teacher for my first lesson. I am working at Winglong PTY, an Australian company that helps to strengthen the relationship between Australia and China. The company was founded by David Fu, my boss, who had moved to Australia for his studies and never left. Currently he is jetting constantly between Beijing and Sidney, where the headquarter of Winglong is located. The company has two main services: First, they organize tours for politicians, businesspeople, and interest groups from Australia to China and the other way around. Second, they help companies from all over the world concerning Import/Export issues to and from China. This is one of my favorite fields in business and I hope that this internship will give me an in-depth view. Currently I am supposed to help out in the booking department of the company, but more about my internship later…
Working in China – Chinese Lesson
Now to my Chinese lessons and my teacher Mr. Wang. He used to be a Chinese instructor at Siemens and speaks English and German at a very good level. He is an old friend of my boss, and I guess he liked me from the beginning, because he reduced the price for my private lessons to less than $ 8 per hour. I will meet with him twice a week for 1 ½ hours, but I am thinking about increasing the hours, especially in the beginning, so I can finally communicate. We had a one hour class, sort of like a test session so far. He is a great teacher and even though we only had one hour, I really learned a lot. The confusing part, however, was that we were communicating in English, German, and Chinese. I took 5 pages of notes, which I have to study now until Monday, when I will have my next lesson.
Working in China – Lunch time
After my Chinese lesson, it was almost time for lunch break, and three of my co-workers took me to their favorite food court. I was a little bit overwhelmed, because there were about 30 food parlors and I did not have a clue what to get. So I asked one of my colleagues, Yoyo, to get me whatever she is getting. She was completely afraid that I might not like what she is eating, so she decided that we would do it the Chinese way and share several meals. Yoyo ordered 4 different entrees, 2 with beef, one with pork and also cabbage in soy sauce. All of them were very delicious and we had a great time. I asked them some questions about cultural differences, and I think that they really appreciate my interest in their culture and traditions. On our way back to work, I found a neat little coffee place right next to our office building. All of you who know me, know how important this is for me!!! Coffee makes my day, I need it to survive!!
Working in China – More about my Internship
Now a little bit more about my internship: I already mentioned that I am working in the booking department of the company, which is sort of like a travel agency. As I did not really work that much in the morning, I expected that I would get some tasks or any kind of work in the afternoon. Unfortunately, they did not give me anything, even though I offered my help several times. So I spend my time being bored and writing emails. At around 4 PM, after I had asked at least 20 times whether I could help with anything, they sent me a paper and asked me to read it. It is a statistical paper about Australia, its economy, environment, people, everything. At first I thought this is kind of interesting, but then I realized that the paper is more than 800 pages long, and they did not even give me an explanation why I should read this. Well, at least now I know something about deserts, arid, and semi-arid areas in Australia… I decided that I will give it until Wednesday of next week, and if I did not get any meaningful work by then, I will ask David Fu, whether I could work in another department. I really hope this will work out, because I am much more interested in the Import/Export business than in booking hotels and arranging flights. Well, I will keep you posted on further development on this…
Oh yes, I have news about the expired food at Carrefour!!! One of my readers wrote me a message that the date on the package is not the expiration date, but rather the date on which the item was produced. I have to admit, that I did not think of it this way, and I truly apologize in case I offended someone. Please understand that I have just arrived in China a couple of days ago and everything is new, foreign and strange to me. I am sorry for this misunderstanding and hope that my readers will correct me, if this should occur again. Thank you in advance!!!
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