Date registered: April 16, 2009
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I've noticed some of my Chinese friends use Dettol or Walch (those disinfectants/germicides) in their laundry. I always figured the fewer chemicals the better but now I'm wondering if it's a good idea to use those (at least for socks and underwear and bedding) because we don't have hot water in the washing machines. My clothes don't really come out of the wash very refreshed with just cold water and liquid detergent. Does anybody use them? Do they enhance your laundering experiences?
Also, does anybody use those washing machine cleaner products, or are those just more useless cleaning products?
I notice a lot of the ads for English teachers just list "competitive salary." What does that mean in this day and age?
If you don't mind disclosing what your work situation is (age of students, class size, all at one school or are you "farmed out," holidays, etc. and minimum qualifications) and salary, I would appreciate it — I am interested to know what the "average" is these days in Chengdu. When I taught at a vocational school in 2005-2006 the working hours were low and holidays long and we were paid 4,000 a month for 12 months plus international roundtrip plane ticket and a pretty nice studio apartment off campus. But now cost of living has risen a lot since then so I guess salaries have risen somewhat as well?
I used to think Chengdu taxi drivers were the nicest taxi drivers in China. Not so anymore! Ignoring the imbecilic refusal-to-take-passengers-at-rush-hour phenomenon, I've had one give me a fake 50, another one laugh at me when I asked him to go down the street that I live on because he was so sure it was one-way (it used to be but hasn't been for months, and he flat out refused to believe me although I live there and go up and down that street daily), a whole slew of them refuse to take me on a weekend night, and that's just in the past few days. Irritating! Just had to vent.
I have a face wash from Limi. I think it is the juicy pear or something. It is a bit drying so I don't use it often. I picked it because it was much cheaper than the other scents. I am frequently overwhelmed by the number of choices even within brands, let alone all the different brands.
I haven't tried the Ikea body wash (didn't even know it existed). Good tip!
Nail polish remover: yeah, that's my experience so far too.
I have a couple of Skin Food nail polishes I bought from a box shop for like 15 RMB each which I thought was reasonable. The colors are really pretty. I'll give their skincare products a try next time I see them.
What about BB creams? I went into one shop and the woman working there patted some Missha BB cream onto the back of my hand, but I couldn't see any appreciable difference between that and the other skin around it so I passed, especially since it cost more than it would have cost even in the States where it's not particularly cheap.
Are the Tsubaki products sold in Metro more expensive than the Watsons ones?
OK, this is a girly and irreverent thread for this site, so if you don't like reading about such topics, consider this fair warning.
So, what kind of skincare or makeup products have you tried here that you liked or disliked, where'd you buy them, how much did they cost, etc.?
I'll start with Ascience (or is it Asience?) shampoo and conditioner. You can buy them at Watsons and probably also 1000 Colors and possibly some of the big supermarkets. I bought a big pump bottle of shampoo for around 50 kuai and a small tube of hair treatment for around 25 kuai, must have been over a year ago because I can't even remember when. They leave my hair soft but not weighed down.
The Shiseido shampoo/conditioner that you can get at Watsons in the pointy-capped bottles are also OK but a little bit more expensive, and I like the Asience just a bit better.
What about face masks? I've just bought my first and I'll write a review once I've been using it for a while?
Has anybody had a facial done here? Or meibai products? Or have moisturizer recommendations? Also where can I find some good (read: effective) nail polish remover?
Roaches check in but they don't check out!
Just had to.
I'm actually more concerned with my speaking than reading. I have to read quite a bit for my job, and so while reading Chinese is nowhere near like reading English for me, I can do it without too many tears (depending on subject matter and level of the text, of course). This comes as no surprise considering my first language development followed much the same course: I started learning words by reading them rather than hearing them at a pretty early age (and hence had the problem that I didn't necessarily know how to pronounce them or recognize them when I heard them. Once I knew enough characters in Chinese I instinctively started to try to read any text in sight, particularly text on advertisements, food packages, and the like.)
Also, the Perakun add-on for Firefox is really helpful.
So I probably have a fairly good database of characters in my head but that doesn't always translate well to oral communication. I oftentimes have a delayed response when I hear a word or it takes me some time to summon the word I need when speaking.
Just wondering if anybody has tips on continuing their Chinese studies. I have been in China nearly a decade and learning Chinese (sometimes actively, sometimes passively) for that entire time. So my Chinese is definitely beyond the basic level, but usually I still feel it's not good enough. I know that I express things in strange ways and also sometimes I struggle when getting into more complicated topics. I guess I would like to sound more professional and educated when speaking and writing. I don't really want to prepare for an exam or enroll in a university program, but the last few times I tried private tutors I couldn't find a very good one (granted, that was 2005, and there weren't the networks there are today). Many of the training centers seem to aim more at students of beginning-level Chinese. What do you all recommend? Chinesepod? P.S. I don't have an iPhone or Android.
You know, in an ideal world, yeah, everybody would be able to fluently speak the language of the country they're going to move to and know the culture and yadda yadda. But plenty of people have managed to move to China with limited or no Chinese skills and survived, so, yes, while it's helpful I don't think it's a reason to just forget about moving here. (Of course, I'd highly recommend one to learn as much as he/she can before coming, and to try to continue to learn while here.) Besides, plenty of people managed to move here before the days when Google was your one-stop answer for any question, so I read Journey's questions here exactly as an attempt to "search for information that will help [him/her] survive here."
Visa - Probably not a very good idea. You won't be able to change a tourist visa to a work visa in country as far as I know. If you're coming to study you're supposed to come on a student visa; if you're coming to work you're supposed to come on a work visa (of course you need appropriate paperwork supplied by the school or employer to obtain either of those in your home country).
Renting a room - Yes, if you can read Chinese. Otherwise, this is probably your best option until you're in Chengdu, when you can just go to an agent (though you'll need to speak Chinese or have somebody translate at most of them).
Job - This one is probably your best bet.
Bank Account - Passport and 10 yuan. Ability to speak Chinese helpful, but if not, find a Chinese person to translate for you.
ID - Passport.
Transportation - No need for a car. Bikes are good. The bus network is good but the buses tend to be very crowded. Subway has one line so far and another to open later this year. Taxis are also plentiful, though catching an empty one during rush hour can be difficult.
i'm with brajilianzitsu. i'm pretty shy so i don't go out of my way to wave and greet, but if we make eye contact i do a smile and nod (although my attempts at a smile probably looks like a frown to most people anyway, i.e.,
http://blog.krisatomic.com/?p=1617 so maybe it's pointless).
>> "(does your hand go around your legs or between them when you try to make sure not to get urine everywhere"
i am fine with them. in public toilets i guess i prefer them to pedestal toilets, but i wish they weren't usually accompanied by pee-covered floors. so that either means frequent cleaning or a better design (in taiwan i saw that most of the squat toilets had a little ledge that prevented a lot of the splatter that leads to the wet floors.
i think the yuck factor in visiting a lot of public toilets in china is the aforementioned grimey floors, dirty stall walls and doors, not knowing whether to press the flusher with your hand or your shoe, the stench, and most of all the lack of toilet paper, soap (and hot water would be nice too if we're going all out). not so much the squat toilets themselves. i quite like the squat toilets in most of the airports i've been to which are usually kept very clean and have the aforementioned facilities.
that said my anatomy is such that i am able to squat all the way down without fear of falling over. i know some people aren't, so that might be a big reason for the dislike. personally i feel pooping is much more comfortable and sanitary in that position than on a pedestal toilet. public toilet splashback = GROSS. but i am very paranoid about dropping things in a squatter so i am always careful to hold up my clothes, tie up my scarf, and clear out my pockets before squatting down.
i saw a vendor selling them at the zebra festival last year. he said he had brought them from hangzhou and he was selling them for around 100 a pair as far as i recall. whatever the price i distinctly remember thinking it was high. and also that if he could bring them from hangzhou and sell them in chengdu for that much they must not be that easy to get in chengdu.
the answer is always taobao it seems.