When Are You Really Leaving China?


English: This flag is for the Chinese communit...
English: This flag is for the Chinese community in the United States (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The other day I was reading an article and it was giving you 5 signs you know you are in China for the long run.   It was quit funny until I started identifying with what they were saying and then it got scary.

One of the reasons they said you know you are in China for the long run was that you get a pet.  Now, I am not a big pet person it tend to forget to feed it; I can barely keep a plant alive… and lord knows how my kids made it to adulthood.  So I didn’t fall in this category and I laughed to myself to think how attached some people are to their pets that this would be a major issue.   Another was that your boss keeps giving you more money to stay in your job.   This started to hit home… every time I start considering leaving my job my boss will give me more money or another opportunity for a business connection will pop up. Every year we go to thru the bargaining process and my money usually gets higher but I get locked into work myself to an early grave.  Until you just have so much career stuff going on here that going back home doesn’t sound as profitable.  Actually, with the economy in the states going back home would be a bad career move.  Here with the cost of living being so cheap and your salary being 3 times the amount of the average worker it is very hard to leave.

They also mentioned that your friends at home stop believing that your coming home. This had me cracking up because my friends have kind of stopped believing me.  They keep telling me that I say that all the time and I keep changing the date and timeline of when I am moving back.   Well, it is difficult to make such a big move and start all over again.  Something is always coming up to have you change the time.   As my family say that is just excuses because when I came to China I just left and went.   It is not that I love China so much but I think more the fact that I have established things here that I might never be able to do in the states.  There is always some kind of new or interesting opportunity popping up.  I am a kind of small town celebrity and get use to that attention.

They also said that your own country feels like a vacation destination and that you take more photos of your home country than of the China.   I really felt this.  Since, I can’t get back home so often it does feel like I am on vacation when I go back to the states, not like I just came home.   Funny how that happens?  I go home and I feel like a tourist.  I go and visit things and people I have not seen in a while and want to take photos of everything to show the folks back in China.

The last think they mentioned is that you marry a local Chinese person.  Welp, I guess that seals the deal.  I have married Michael and we have been here married for about 3 years and I have lived in China almost five; the Chinese would say that I AM Chinese and that I am” local people”.   It seems I may know more about our little city and more about the people in the city than the people who have lived here their whole life.  My ex-husband that is Chinese said to me on the phone one day that if you stay there for 5 years you will not be able to come back to America it won’t be the same and you will have changed too much.  It made me think.

So as my daughter asked me one day “When are you REALLY leaving China?  I had to honestly tell her I don’t know.   Here I am financially stable, I have a place to live that is decent, I have networked with many people to the fact that I have a little power I even dine with the mayor, and I have been crown the Ambassador of the Foreigners in my City.   I have been offered partnerships, business opportunities, to do TV shows and even entertain at weddings and parties.   I have been deemed the resident expert on American Culture and Chinese Culture for that matter.  I have met so many people from so many other countries and helped them adjust to life in China that they have become some of my best friends all over the world.   I have really created an interesting life here.

I have actually started my life over in Another country… and it is okay, more than okay it is really nice.   Maybe they are right in the article I read; if you have any or most of these signs .. your stuck in China and probably will never leave…. When I really think about it maybe it isn’t a bad thing.

until next time.

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11 thoughts on “When Are You Really Leaving China?

  1. I know what you mean. Last summer before I headed down south for a new job, a friend of my wife’s asked if I would be interested in being an extra for a CCTV show that was being shot in China. I later found out that it was going to be an actual speaking part. The show is supposed to be on CCTV8 as part of Yanji’s anniversary celebration. The English name for the show is “My Home Under Chaingbai Mountain.”

    But our stay is about to become longer because my wife and I will soon be the proud parents of a little girl and I want her to get to know her family hee in China and also become bilingual before we head back to the US so she can start school.

  2. Beth

    Hmm…sounds like I will not be going back to the U.S. anytime soon either. I do not have a pet but most of the other points apply as I originally came to Europe only for two years but it has now been over a decade..;-)

  3. Wow look at you! All of your accomplishment sound quite amazing and impressive! Jo, you are my inspiration! I can’t wait to meet you when I arrive in China (which is about 18 day…yikes!!!!) I’m glad to see so much is going well with you and keep it up!

  4. rredict

    If everything is working out good for you, you should stay there. The US is a mess right now due to this ecomony. Its the worse recession in history other than the great depression. I been thinking about moving to Canada.

    Anyway, you are not missing anything in the US. I would stay in China, at least until the US ecomony get better, if that ever happens again..

  5. Opps i accidently hit the post button lol Anywho A korean job welcomed me with open arms. Nobody understood or still understands but rhe opportunties ive been able to have out here a billion times more and better than it culd ever have been in the US. I blog and vlog make good extra money from, gained amazing supporters, made amazing friends…so why wuld i want to leave that? I get to do what I love but ppl still juat want to know’when im coming back.’ my answer…hunny i dont know but i DO know im happy where i am

  6. Vicki

    Good points. I am about to return to China after being away for two years and find that i am taking photos to show our friends there. would love to meet you one day, we will be working at a neibouring city, Shaoxing. Some of our Chinese friends are amazed when we tell them stuff about their city that they didnt even know so know what you mean about being an expert.

  7. Wow I can so relate. Its like family and friends in the Us are always like ‘when are you coming back, oh your going to stay there more, your never gona come back.” But when I think about their response it gives me even reason to stay living abroad. Its like what do I have to go back to..and why? I have an amazing mother who i love with all my heart brothers and a grandmother I love, but other than thats whats a solid reason to go back? Hexk I had jus graduated from college w a bachelora and not 1 place called me back no matter how hard I tried. I told ppl Korea was where I wanted and NEEDED to be. They still didnt understand. I was

  8. You just have to trust your gut. So what if you dont come back to the states. Yah some people may say “told you so” but if its working that good there then honey I would stay. I would love to live in China if we could afford it. My husband has family in Guang Dong do it would be really cool! Love your blogs!

  9. John Lee

    You are right you never leave China, you got a good job, a place to stay, nice friends, a good husband who will love you. In the state unemployment is still high, I give up looking for work, no one want to hire a senior so I decide to retired or semi-retired

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