It has been 2 years since we first stepped foot in Kunming, China. Our friends asked us a lot of times, why China? Our goal was very clear — pick up Mandarin in a span of 1 year, 2 max, and hope for opportunities to pop open after learning the language. Mandarin, after all, is spoken by 20% of the world’s population.
The country intrigued us. I have visited China before, ferrying from Hong Kong to Shenzhen for a day trip and back. Ian, however has not step foot on the country. This time we decided we want to visit, not just to travel but perhaps to live there for an indefinite timeframe.
Photos of shocking and amazing China experiences here.
Documenting our language learning progress was an obvious thing for us to do. We both took up Mandarin classes from Primary to Secondary school but it wasn’t practiced outside the 4 walls of the classroom. Which is why, we do not consider it as our third language. College has nothing to do with Mandarin, and so did our workplaces. 10 years later, we wanted to relearn the language and hopefully be able to use it for real.
How did we find our school?
We didn’t look for it. A friend was already studying at the same school 6 months before we came. We have never heard of Kunming before. We were looking into Beijing and Shanghai but my goodness! The living standard in those 2 cities is around 4X that of Kunming! It was a no-brainer for us to just head to Kunming and figure things out as we go along. Turns out, we figured Kunming is the best city in China for us! If you Google, Kunming is the least polluted city in China, and is one of the most beautiful provinces with amazing landscapes and sceneries! Not to mention food and transportation expenses are so much cheaper, and quality of life incomparable too!
We uploaded our first vlog, Life in 昆明 Kunming – Vlog 01 September 2015, exactly 2 years ago. Watching it now made us laugh at ourselves, we sound so horrible! Pronunciation and intonation among others are all on the wrong places. And we clearly used simple words, such as ”要“ meaning want or will, probably a few hundred times.
Without further ado, presenting you our first vlog ever.