2014.10.29【英译中】China Daily | 一位美国人的自述:我为什么到这儿来

三叶草1998 (Selina) 译往情深
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发表于:2014-10-29 17:35 [只看楼主] [划词开启]

So why am I here?

 Popularity 41Viewed 5082 times2014-3-27 20:26|System category:Life| interesting

         As a citizen of the United States, I can easily say that I feel much better about myself living in China than I did living in my country the past few years. America’s economy took a major hit in 2007 and still has not recovered to normal. So there I was, a man who graduated college on December 17, 2007 and could not find a job anywhere. I first tried finding jobs in my community and did not have any luck. Next I tried all over my home state of Pennsylvania with no luck. Finally, I tried searching out of state and still was unable to find an occupation that resembled anything I learned in college or required me to use my brain. It was a very sad, frustrating, and depressing time for me. 


     So one day I was working out at the gym and CNN was on TV and the news anchor was interviewing a teacher from the USA that decided to teach English in China. She (the teacher) said that working in China is great and had no interest in returning home anytime soon except to visit. So I thought to myself as I am jogging on the treadmill “Why can’t I do that and why did I not think of this sooner?” As soon I returned to my house I went on the internet and started researching and before I knew it, I was preparing to leave my country to live in a country I only dreamed of visiting and now I was going there to work. China is the place to be right now with an outstanding economy and plenty of educational jobs for people like me who have a college education and enjoys working with children.




         The thought of leaving your home to live in a completely different world is overwhelming. You have many thoughts racing through your mind, thoughts such as “I can’t believe I am actually doing this!” “What if it doesn’t work for me?” “How am I going to buy food at the grocery store?” “How am I going to be able to navigate my way through China?” “Am I going to be homesick?” “What about my family and friends?”



     But all those thoughts of fear turned into excitement once I landed in Beijing. Everything you are looking at is new to you, especially the bathrooms! What a difference that was for me. Once I was able to go the restaurants and try food that I never had was great, being able to say to my friends and to strangers “I ate Peking Duck in the Chaoyeng District in Beijing.” Not many other people in the United States can say that sentence truthfully. If I have an urge for fast-food, no problem, there are many fast-food restaurants here that are in the United States. 



     Don’t get me wrong, some days can be hard because of the communication barrier, you have to learn to live with it and adapt in all ways possible. I am actively learning Mandarin but it takes time. It is difficult because words in Mandarin have pitches in the words, whereas the English language is simply pronunciation. Also, Mandarin doesn’t use the Roman alphabet like the English language does.



     As a result, I am not able to fully function on my own, I need a cell phone with me at all times, even if it is just to ask the cook to put beef in my rice if my translator isn’t with me. I only go to restaurants that have picture menus because I can’t fully read Chinese characters, so essentially I cannot read. I wish every restaurant had picture menus. Forget trying to ask a stranger for directions, unless of course the person speaks English. Unfortunately, that hardly ever happens. After all, I am in China, not the United States. Sometimes I feel ashamed of myself for not learning it before I arrived here. 


       But one thing for sure, the citizens of China don’t judge me for not knowing Mandarin or Cantonese. The people of China are extremely kind and generous. It’s like they are saying to me every day: Welcome to China. If it wasn’t for the kindness of ordinary Chinese people, I don’t feel I would have been able to adjust to a new life. I certainly appreciate the attention I receive going into a restaurant because I can see it in the owner’s eyes that they are fascinated that someone like me is sitting in their restaurant eating. Even though there is a language barrier, Chinese people do everything they can in their power to help a foreigner out and for that I want to say to the people of China is this: Thank you and I love you all.




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