Winter holidays and beginning of the new semester

It’s been almost two months that you’ve heard from me, but the last weeks just passed by in a blink of an eye and there were a lot of things that kept me really busy. Besides I had some problems with my internet connection what made it really difficult to upload content.

What have I been doing? Where have I been?

Well, let’s start from the beginning: Due to the winter holidays in january and the fact that i felt like the only person left on the campus here, I decided that  I gotta get away…see something new, challenge myself and just make the best out of the time that I have here. Here in China I fell in love with cycling, so I thought it would be a nice and cheap way to travel by bike. I wanted to go to Kunming – the so called spring city – and do  most of the way by bike. Before leaving Guangzhou many people told me I was crazy and to be honest there were several times during my journey when I thought so too. But I made it and it was one of the best experiences in my life so far. I didn’t take a lot of pictures, because I didn’t have my camera with me due to it’s weight and because I really needed a break from everything. I didn’t want to think about how to show the amazing landscape to others or from how many different angles I should take pictures to make sure that the photo really represents what i was seeing, I wanted to enjoy every single moment of this journey, don’t think about anything, just let go and make memories for myself.

Then in february I went back to Germany and spent two wonderful weeks with my friends and familiy. It’s always nice to know that no matter how long you don’t see each other you never lose that connection that you and your close friends have. What made me even happier, was that two of the most important persons in my life made the effort to come and visit me in Munich. I really enjoyed my holidays in Germany and was very grateful for all the big bowls of fresh salad and the possibilty to have hot showers in the morning 🙂

Photo by Maria Hochleitner

Photo by Maria Hochleitner

Now I am back in Guangzhou and the summer semester has already started. Compared to last semester things are quite different now: In the last weeks a lot of students left China cause they were missing their old lives in their home countries and didn’t feel like staying here anymore. The number of international students shrank to less than 20 now and in my class I am the only western person. I am attending the advanced chinese classes and that’s quite hard sometimes.  I don’t compare myself to others and I know where I am standing, but sitting next to all those guys who already know most of the characters because they speak korean or japanese or who have chinese origins is kind of challenging. Nevertheless I am giving my best and I think I can improve my chinese a lot if I pull through.

Although it’s a lot more quiet here now and almost no european students are left, I don’t regret my decision to stay also for the summer semester. Spending a year abroad is a chance that you don’t get every now and then so you should try to make the most out of this experience and a bit of smog, contaminated food or slow internet is definitely not gonna make me feel like going home and missing that chance.

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