1. You Drink Hot Water
Image: Medical News Today
Especially in the winter, or if you are sick.
I remember one time I had a really bad cold in China, and my roommate actually scolded me for drinking cold water. Wait… what?
Now I relish the hot water, and even ask for it at restaurants. If I’m sick, it’s all I drink. I even complained to my parents that the water in our fridge was too cold, and took to drinking out of the sink while I was home. Why would you want to drink cold water in the winter?!
2. You Believe in Chinese Medicine
Image: Travel and Leisure
I’m a believer! I drink banlangen tea whenever I feel like I’m starting to get sick. I actually prefer Chinese herbal medicines for minor stomach issues or to cure a sore throat. It’s less intense than western medicine, and it works!
I’m also a huge fan of Chinese cupping massages, as those of you who follow me on Snapchat probably already know. I’m going to do it every time my back hurts from now on!
3. You Prefer Squat Toilets
Trust me, if a toilet is going to be dirty, you’re going to want it to be a squat toilet. One of my main issues with Western public toilets is that Chinese people refuse to sit on them. Then you get all these women spraying their pee ALL OVER THE SEAT (and sometimes blood!!!!!!) because they don’t lift up the toilet seat.
If you’re going to try and pee without sitting down, at least lift up the toilet seat like a guy. Guys can aim and they still lift it up!
In my opinion, it’s much easier to squat over a squatty potty than a Western toilet. I really wish my office building’s public bathrooms would at least install one squat toilet so I wouldn’t have to deal with this mess every day.
4. You Dislike Dryers
What is the point of them anyway? They take a ton of energy, and ruin your clothes. Besides, my apartment in Beijing is so extremely warm and dry, all of my clothes are done within a few hours. Ningbo was another story though, sometimes it would take multiple days for things to dry due to how cold and wet it always was inside!
Regardless, I don’t use dryers anymore. Not even when I’m home. I prefer to keep my sweaters nice and soft, thank you very much!
5. You Can Cook Anything With a Hot Plate, a Rice Cooker, and a Toaster Oven
Image: Grasshopper Leisre
I still don’t have a toaster oven, but if I did, I’d be able to cook everything! My cooking supplies consist of one pan and a rice cooker. You’d honestly be surprised what a rice cooker can do. I don’t even need a pot to boil water for pasta or soups because I can just do it in my rice cooker now!
6. You Have No Problems with Shoving People
Image: World Nomads
Here’s the deal guys, Chinese people don’t really have the same concepts of personal space as we do in the West. Bumping into someone is not really something that needs to be apologized for. If you’re getting on the subway, you need to literally shove everyone in front of you to make sure you get on (and the little push from behind is helpful!)
Also, in my opinion, sometimes Chinese people are very oblivious about their surroundings (no offense, but it’s true). I still don’t quite understand this, especially in a city as crowded as Beijing, but people will just stop wherever they feel like it, completely blocking pathways, the entrance to elevators, full sidewalks… whatever. Then, to get by, people will just shove past them. Rather than realize they’re blocking the way, they just continue to stand there, doing whatever it is that’s so important on their phones.
When I see people blatantly obstructing obvious pathways, rather than shove past them, I’ve taken to lightly grabbing their shoulders and physically moving them out of the way. Sometimes they look up at me confused, and then realize “Oh wow, I’m blocking about 20 people from going down this escalator.. whoopsies!” and other times they don’t even notice.
7. You Can Go 2 Years Without Owning a Fork
Image: Big Think
I literally didn’t have a fork for two years… and I didn’t have one when I studied abroad either. The very first time I bought a fork in China was this fall when I was furnishing my apartment. It’s convenient for pasta, and salad but to be honest I hardly use it. Chopsticks and spoons are more than enough!
What did I do for all those Western foods? Macaroni and cheese? Spoon. Cake? Spoon. Salad? Chopsticks. Spaghetti? Chopsticks. Steak? Chop that baby up with your butcher’s knife and use chopsticks!
8. You Can Tell When Money is Fake
Image: What's On Xiamen
It only took me 3 years and getting scammed out of 300 kuai ($50), but I can now tell when money is fake in China. I’m actually an expert at it. I actually never had this problem in Ningbo, or any other place I visited in China, but this is a HUGE problem in Beijing. My friend has only been here less than a year and he schooled me on a fake I thought was real.
9. You Can Defend Against Line Jumpers
I can now easily recognize when people are about to cut me, and I’ve become an expert at fending them off. Usually this involves subtly sticking my foot out in front of them, so they’ll trip if they try to inch forward. Then I slowly shift my body weight until I’m firmly blocking them.
When I’m at a counter trying to buy train tickets and someone sneaks in from the side, I’ll slide my hand out in front of their body and then slowly butt them out with my back. Usually they’re actually pretty impressed! Just cause I’m foreign doesn’t mean I can’t fend you off!
The only people I’m still bad about dealing with are the little grannies! They are brutal. BRUTAL. They’re about half your size and will literally bowl you down. Then when you look back with a scowl they GIGGLE. How do you fend off a granny?!! It’s impossible.
10. WeChat is Your Life
Image: Shanghai Daily
WeChat is the Chinese version of Whatsapp, but that’s just the beginning. Chinese people actually don’t use regular text messages, they just use WeChat to text. WeChat also has voice messaging, a ridiculous amount of moving emojis, and you can even save your own gifs as stickers to use! You can make group chats that you can even mute if they’re causing too many notifications. I’m part of a nightlife in Beijing group that has 500 people!
WeChat also has a social media element that has become the Chinese mobile version of Facebook. You can also download WeChat on your computer and use it like AIM, or send actual documents as attachments. When I couldn’t get on my Chinese work email back in the US I had all my students texting me their essays!
WeChat also has a section for public accounts, which you can follow. This acts as an RSS feed where Chinese people follow all their favorite bloggers. My company even has their own WeChat public account where we post newsletters almost daily.
WeChat also has WeChat Wallet where you can set up your bank card and transfer money to your friends with just a text message. You can also even buy plane and train tickets on WeChat, which I’ve actually done more than once. You can either search for tickets on their version of Skyscanner, or if you buy tickets on your computer, a lot of Chinese airline sites will let you pay with WeChat by scanning a QR code. For example, I just found a cheap flight to Vietnam on the Chinese website Ctrip, and was able to pay by scanning the code with my phone.
Don’t have any cash on you? Even the tiny hole-in-the-wall restaurant across the street from my apartment has a QR code that you can scan to pay with WeChat. Yep… they don’t take Chinese credit or debit cards, but they have their own QR code so you can pay with WeChat.
Source: Adventures Around Asia