Winters in China

This is my 8th winter in China…..and every winter I tell myself that I will be ready… I order many pairs of socks, and leggings with fur inside.  I get more sweaters and clean all my winter blankets to get them ready.  Every year I tell myself…. I will not be cold and I will handle this like a champ.

This pre-winter was no exception.  I got everything ready to prepare for the China Winter season.   As with every winter thus far … I am again freezing my ass off.04snow-span-600

I don’t know what it is…. I just can never get warm in this freaking place.   I have floor heaters, scarves, gloves and hats… I layer my clothes and even break down and drink hot water… but I can never get warm enough.  It doesn’t help that everywhere I go.. every Chinese person opens a window… to let in “fresh air” …. which is ironic since Chinese has some of the highest pollution levels in the world.   I even have to remind everyday to shut the freaking windows….

At school is worse…. I am lucky enough to have heat in the classrooms and office.. however that heat has to be shared with students and co-workers… and it seems that they don’t feel the cold like I do.  However, when I walk through the hallways of our extremely large (someone is over compensating) school building .. its like I am walking through a winter wonderland.  Its freezing… all the doors and windows are open and its a damp cold… so the floors are all slippery with moisture…. so not only am I cold… i need to balance so I don’t fall all over the place.Humble-Administrator-s-Garden-in-winter

Its just too damn cold …. now if you look at the temperature.. its only about 25 degrees…. so they say that isn’t very cold why are you complaining…. but i have to remind people that the walls are cement, the floors are cement and there is no insulation whatsoever in anything, so we work and live in CAVES… like animals.    What is wrong with these people?

Of course I choose the seat by the sliding glass door off the balcony in our office .. because I wanted the view and the sunshine in the spring and summer months… however, come winter and fall…. the little Chinese people will come and open .. said door and tell me … they need fresh air…. I say… I don’t need the flu… shut the damn door.  They just giggle and walk away…. but the door is still open….!!!!

So you see me .. in the office at school… wearing … hat, scarf, gloves (typing with gloves is not easy) and a big coat on.  I look like I am about to travel to Alaska…. but actually I am only going to class to educate the future leaders of china. images

So my advice people…. if you are every coming to china… in the months of November to March….. which is the peak winter months….. my best suggestion would be…. wait until spring…..


until next time…..


9 thoughts on “Winters in China

  1. Jo, I can sympathize — the winters are not easy here, and as you said, it’s a damp cold which makes it even tougher. I think the only way I survive is with an electric mattress pad and heating in the rooms I work in. But yeah, it can feel like living in a cave for sure. Sending you hugs from rural Hangzhou (where it is even colder than in the city!).

  2. I feel your pain. Here in Taiwan it’s a similar situation: No central heating anywhere, cement buildings with zero insulation, and high humdity which makes even a relatively not-so-bad 15°C temperature feel like the cold wet air is going right through your bones.

    As a fellow American, and grandparent, who moved to Taiwan almost eight years ago, I really enjoy reading your take on life in China. 加油!

  3. avaming

    Hi Jo, how are you? I’ve been reading your blog for a few years now, in fact your writing was one of the reasons that cemented my decision to move to China in 2012. I live in Shenzhen and have recently started a blog called My Oriental Life. Would it be okay to link your blog and facebook page to mine and vice versa?Let me know if it’s okay and if I need any special links etc. Best wishes and thanks for all of the great info you’ve provided over the years. ps . Jet looks gorgeous, you’re a lucky woman! (I’m sure he’s a lucky man too) (-: Take care,Ava

    Date: Sun, 6 Dec 2015 08:06:46 +0000 To:

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