I am fortunate that I have a lot of family in Shenzhen who can take care of me when I need family love. I haven't needed to ask my 2nd aunts and uncles for anything major, but it feels good to play some tennis, or have a nice lunch with them a few times a month.
Every time I have food with my relatives and their friends, we always go through the same routine. My aunt usually announces the same things to the group:
- I am an American. Yes. A real American.
- I've lived there since I was very young.
- Although it might seem that my speaking ability is good, I cant read or write at all.
- I'm here as a "intern" at a enterprise based in
- I graduated from
. Columbia University
I then take over attempting to explain that:
- I am NOT an "intern" but a manager in charge of product development department with a lot of responsibilities and in charge of 4 employees
- Although it seems I cant write characters that well, I can type them decently. I have also never had the opportunity to learn the characters and i'm still picking things up everyday. I can read about 50% of the stuff on TV or in the papers.
- Yes. I am American.
The subject usually turn away from me until further along in the meal where I'm always asked the same 2 questions.
- What food is better, Chinese or Western?
- Have you become accustomed to living in
The answer to the first question is obvious. They're both good and bad. Sometimes I'm in the mood for chicken parm, turkey with mashed potatoes, or a burger and onion rings. Other times I'm in the mood for Chinese bbq, Chinese home style food or dumplings. I even enjoy sushi, tacos and Korean bbq also! And no, steak is not the main food of choice in the
My answer to question 2 is more interesting. I've realized that in reality, my life in
During this Spring Festival vacation, the similarities are even more resounding. With the mass exodus of migrant labor from the city (I’m assuming at least 4-7 million people left), Shenzhen almost feels like
Globalization is most definitely taking its effect. It has created a modern life style that is pretty much similar no matter where you go. I have been lucky enough to see it, feel it and experience it in person, not only through my work (by traveling and participating in Chinese manufacturing exporting into the
Now if I just found a place in Shenzhen that made a good Chicken Parm…