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Saturday, April 21, 2007

Getting used to everything

Ni Hao!

After a few days in Kunming I'm starting to get used to the idea that I will be here for a long time. I try to make myself feel at home by exploring the streets, starting to learn some Chinese and doing things I would do back home as well. I bought a Chinese SIM-card, so I can call people and companies around here, put my bicycle back together and shopped for several items I still needed. There is one thing that is a lot worse than expected: Chinese are small! And so are their feet... The largest shoe size they sell is 44 and I'm a size 45/46 :-( So I can't find any sport shoes (except very ugly, huge basketball shoes) or normal shoes to fit my suits... It's going to be a challenge finding them!

Yesterday I got a call from Aaron, one of the Americans teaching here, that a Chinese company was looking for a white person to act as a spokes person for a perfume company. Of course I was interested, because why not get a job just because you are white... haha! Three people from that company picked me up in a huge Toyota and drove me to their company near the airport. Although one of them spoke a little English and acted as a translator, it was really hard to understand what it was that they exactly wanted me to do. After a tour of the company and lots of blah blah another person arrived that did speak "excellent" English. But even with his help my exact job description remained a little vague.
However this is what I think they want me to do: To be a representative of the company they do business with in France. To do that I have to sit in a glass office, pretending to be heavily involved in Research and Development on new perfumes and cosmetics, while Chinese tourists walk by and are impressed by this tall, white, "handsome" person that is working for this company so they will buy more products...GREAT Chinese business experience! Don't know yet whether I'm going to do it. First have to discuss the amount of time and the pay, but it sounds really "fun" to play a "white monkey"!! And at the moment I don't have anything else to do ;-)

Today I will make my first cycling trip. But that is going to be a challenge as well. There are no good maps of the area and traffic is, like in any other Chinese city, a disaster... Let's just hope I'll be able to remain on my bicycle ;-)
Besides the daily stuff, we are also planning the better parts of life: holidays!! The first week of May (National Holiday) we're going (back) to Tiger Leaping Gorge, Lijiang and Dali. For the summer we are planning to go to Laos and the Philippines! Lots of good thing to look forward to!!

Mensjes, dat was alles, de groeten maar weer!

1 comment:

Rodney said...

Sounds like a great job. I'd happily fly to Kunming to be Assistant White Monkey if the position is available.

Order the business cards.

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