Hello or Ni Hao 你好
July 05, 2012
I have two children living in China – one is studying abroad in the coastal city of Qingdao and the other is teaching English in Shenyang, just 60 miles from the North Korean border. Both have been to China two times, so it has now become their second home. It is so far away, though! If it weren’t for emails, Pinger, and Skype, it would be very hard to let them go to this far away country.
My husband and I have decided to travel to China to visit our adventurous children. It is not an easy task to travel to China. Obviously, living in the Midwest makes it impossible to fly non-stop. We chose to have two layovers, which will make for a very long day. We leave early one day and don’t get to our final destination until late the next day (China is 13 hours ahead of us).
Preparations before the trip include: checking to see if we are up-to-date on immunizations required (we needed two), getting pictures taken to include in our visa application, actually filling out and sending the visa application to a courier in Chicago so the application can be delivered to and picked back up from the Chinese Consulate and returned to us, finding someone to watch the house and dogs while we’re gone, and actually purchasing the airline, train, and tour tickets (yikes, expensive).
Since my husband has never been abroad and is not fond of long flights, the stress level will be rising in our household as time gets closer to our actual departure. As for me, I’m getting more and more excited for this trip. We will get to see our children in the culture they both love, and hopefully find out what draws them to keep returning to China. Fortunately for us, both children speak Chinese, which will make this trip so much easier.
I’m looking forward to writing my next blog on the actual trip. For more information about travel in China, try these books:
Good day and say jian 再见
Lone Jack Branch