Looking To The Future

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Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

With our wedding and my husbands sisters wedding over, we have been thinking of what to do. As I’ve mentioned before, we couldn’t really sort out jobs because we knew we had our wedding coming up, and my parents were also going to be here for 3 weeks, so we knew it would be difficult to get jobs with these on the horizon. So we made the decision to wait until all these events were over to look for jobs.

We are quite open to anything though. (country wise!) Because we are now married, it’s easier for my husband to live in Europe with me. It’s not 100% plain sailing, but it’s much easier than if we weren’t together!

We were talking and we are in agreement that if Mexico doesn’t work then both of us are open to any country really. My sister in law was very excited telling us about Paris and how she could help us get jobs. We are interested of course, but we need to think of the pro’s and con’s of moving to France. But the option is there.

Another option is Spain. My husband has an aunt that lives in Madrid and I’m sure she could help if we decided to move there. Also in Barcelona we know someone who lives there. So we have options.

I would prefer to live in Spain because I’m learning the language, but I won’t say France is off the cards though.

I think the fact that we lived in China makes us feel like we can sort of survive in any country now, because really, if you can live in China then you can pretty much live in any country! It doesn’t feel like such a daunting task, especially if you plan to move to somewhere in Europe.

But anyway, Ireland is the most viable option at the moment. For my husband it’s the easiest way to get to Europe as all he needs is a visa that shows we are together, so it’s very easy.

For Mexico, it’s on the cards but probably not in the city where we are right now. Mexico city has more opportunities, so I would just have to learn to love the city if we decided to move!

So, as always, we are still up in the air with everything….

But the good thing is my spanish is improving!

So yay for that!

Aisling

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It’s a Foreigner Thing

Not only is learning Chinese difficult for me, but it can also be difficult for a native speaker having to listen to a non-native butcher their language!

During the week, one of our teachers decided to play a game with us. Having split the class into two teams, she each gave us a piece of paper with two Chinese words that we have learnt since the beginning of the semester. We each had to explain what our two words were, without actually saying them.

Our poor teacher! One of the students would be saying a sentence and we would have to quickly raise our hand if we knew the word they were referring to. Our teacher would look at us with astonishment and ask ‘How did you know that was the word???’ She didn’t have a clue what some of the students were saying, but us foreigners did!

For Chinese people, they have learnt Chinese through tones…. so a lot of times when foreigners say something, Chinese people just don’t understand us, simply because our tones aren’t good enough. They rely very heavily on tones to get the meaning across.

Whereas with us during class, we weren’t listening as much to the tones, but to the overall sentence and what they were trying to say.

We have one student from France, and he has a very strong accent when he speaks in Chinese. There are times when he says something and I listen and think ‘God it sounds as if he just spoke French just now’.  But when he said his sentence, the hands went straight up!

Our teacher, god love her…she didn’t have a clue what he said. We kept repeating ‘It’s a foreigner thing’. Each of us were speaking in Chinglish but we all managed to figure out what we were saying, and guess the correct word.

So I suppose that game made us realise that Chinese people won’t understand us a lot of times, but also how us foreigners can manage to get by with our Chinglish… even though it’s only to other foreigners! ha that is a lot of help!

I enjoyed the game though… and plus my team won!

再见

爱玲

 

 

France in Pictures: Provins, Medieval Town

We were lucky enough to visit a lovely medieval town called Provins. In 2001, it became a UNESCO World Heritage Site. It is a lovely little town and if you are in Paris, try and take a trip to this lovely place.

Quaint buildings.

Quaint buildings.

The entrance to the town.

The entrance to the town.

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Areas for eating.

Areas for eating.

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A view of the countryside.

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The medieval wall that protected the town.

The medieval wall that protected the town.

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再见!

Aisling.

France in Pictures: Paris.

I know I’m a bit late posting these, but here you are!

Sacre Couer Basilica

Sacre Couer Basilica

View of the city from the Basilica.

View of the city from the Basilica.

Paris has some lovely ice-cream!

Paris has some lovely ice-cream!

The Moulin Rouge

The Moulin Rouge

The bottom of the Eiffel Tower.

The bottom of the Eiffel Tower.

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The winding queue.

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The most famous view of it.

The most famous view of it.

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The huge amount of locks.

The huge amount of locks.

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Catching some sun on their man-made beach.

Catching some sun on their man-made beach.

The queue to get into Notre Dame Cathedral.

The queue to get into Notre Dame Cathedral.

Inside the Louvre.

Inside the Louvre.

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Bustling about to see the most famous lady in the Louvre.

Bustling about to see the most famous lady in the Louvre.

There she is!

There she is!

We waited 2 hours in the sun to get to this green building; the entrance to the Catacombs.

We waited 2 hours in the sun to get to this green building; the entrance to the Catacombs.

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The long and cold walk down.

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再见!

Aisling.

The romantic city of Paris.

We’ve spent a lovely (and hot) week in the lovely city of Paris. We decided to visit as Rafa’s sister now lives there with her boyfriend, so naturally it was the perfect time to see her. From the rain filled Ireland to the blue sky of France, it was a great welcome! Although my excitement for the sun dwindled a little when I got burnt. My poor Irish skin can’t stick the sun.

But it was a great wee holiday! I’ve been to France a few years ago, but when we were in Paris, we  didn’t get to go sightseeing as it was just a stop off. So this time round we made sure I got to do the touristy things.

During our week, we were staying in the La Defense area. Booking our room with Air BnB, we found a great one that was near to the metro, plus there was a Monoprix near to us aswell. Here they sell French pastries. Oh how I wish the Chinese would adopt these instead of their horrible pastries they make.

So we did the touristy things; went up the Eiffel Tower, visited Disneyland, saw the Mona Lisa, visited the Notre Dame among more. But of course, there were queues….everywhere. The longest wait was for the Catacombs, which took 2 hours….outside, in the sun. We’re glad we visited it, but it was a long wait!

The two things I didn’t exactly like about Paris were

1. It’s cleanliness.

Although I loved Paris; its architecture, winding cobbled streets… what struck me was the amount of cigarette butts that were littered all over the streets. The bins didn’t seem to have the option of putting the butts in the bin, so naturally everyone threw them on the street. So the cleanliness of the city was a bit of a disappointment. It’s such a beautiful city, you would think they would make more of an effort to make it even more beautiful. In comparison to Chengdu, they have an army of cleaners; sweeping the streets and the bins are never overflowing. In Chengdu it’s much cleaner. But anyway it’s still gorgeous.

2. It’s so expensive.

We visited a touristy area in Paris and I came across a menu with deserts being priced at 12euro!  Everything is so expensive! The only place for food that is cheaper than all the restaurants is McDonalds. I’m sure there are cheap places to eat, but with being tourists, we didn’t know these areas. Coming from a country that is extrememly cheap, to arriving to one of the most expensive really puts into perspective how lucky we are to be able to eat and travel cheaply in China.

**Also a tip for anyone visiting Paris and using the metro system. When we were buying tickets, Rafa’s sister used the Spanish version to order the tickets. But she quickly noticed she was being charged more than what they are usually priced at. She switched back to the French version and they were cheaper. So they charge more for tickets when you use the Spanish/English version. So if you can, try and use the French version so you’re not caught out! That’s if you can understand French!

So we arrived back in Ireland to the cold and the clouds, but it’s good to relax. We walked quite a lot in Paris. But I enjoyed my time immensely.

( I will try and post pictures, but our internet here is not very good here so it may take a while)

再见!

Aisling.