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Missing My Mother Tongue

When I lived in China, it was so rare to hear English in public, that my ears would always perk up when I heard English. I would let my ears soak in the sounds, the syllables, and the rhythm of my mother tongue.

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Bloom where you're planted nature England travelBits of Britain, Life Philosophy

Bloom Where You’re Planted

Sometimes life changes are exhausting, and you just want to settle down. Traveling…new places…constant changes…new dreams. Hopefully, these changes grow on you until they become a part of you. Otherwise, you’re left in a state of restlessness. Alongside the enviable, evergreen lawns and fragrant flowers, Britain’s landscape hosts many kinds of plants growing on every surface.  Some algae is yellow …

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Chinese Classroom Culture

“Facebook started the wars in the Middle East.” “ALL boys like watching soccer. ALL girls like shopping.” “Girls should find men who are handsome, rich and good at cooking.” These are some snippets of the misled comments I hear in my Chinese classroom everyday. At first, I just blamed my poor Chinese skills and assumed I had misunderstood their sexist …

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Asia

Abroad in China: the most important thing I learned

People always ask me questions about China, but they all ask the wrong questions. They ask how the culture is different, what weird foods I’ve eaten, what I miss about the USA. These are all valid questions, but they don’t touch on the ONE MAIN thing I’ve learned while abroad, and the one question NO ONE has asked me: How …

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Problem Child: Language and Culture

Learning a foreign language goes beyond the skills of being able to communicate using different sounds and grammar patterns. When you deeply immerse yourself in the culture and the language, you that the two are more deeply intertwined than you ever thought. We don’t always realize it when we just speak our native language, but language inherently includes a culture’s …

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It’s worth it.

I’m sitting here in the dimly lit hospital waiting room surrounded by 3 dozen Chinese people all bundled in their poofy winter coats. No one is smiling, but there is plenty of yelling. As Mandarin bounces across the room, I shiver and inch closer to my Swedish friend for a little more warmth. It’s 30 degrees inside the room because …

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