First impressions


I have now been back in England for just over a week having lived in China for four years.

My first impressions have been those that a foreigner might have. Straight away in the taxi home from the airport, I was hit by the quality of the music on the radio and I could understand all the lyrics- a novelty. Hearing British songs that I’ve not heard for ages is a real treat. I started my new job two days after I landed. It’s in the West End which means that I wandered around in a slight daze for the first few lunch breaks- so many stylish young people, so many lunch options, so many different street fashions, and so many girls who look just like me. In Shanghai I had days where I might only see two or three other white people in a day. I felt plugged in again. These old western capital cities do have a lot to offer, I told myself.

In my first week as a Brit looking through Chinese eyes, I noticed that British people eat and drink too much and don’t look after their health enough, while staying healthy is the golden rule in China. People walk faster here, but the transport moves much much slower.

Since I can understand 99 percent of everything that is said around me (excluding foreigners speaking languages I don’t know on public transport), I have overheard the quaintest of expressions that I’ve not heard for years, including “okie dokie” and “whoops-a-daisy”. These make me smile.

Continue reading here at Telegraph Expat.


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