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Is basic/advanced Chinese necessary to live there???

jonny9 (59 posts) • 0

JULES,

To summarize and condense all the good answers you have gotten here would look like this:

1. advanced Chinese is not a must (but would be wonderful).
2. BASIC CHINESE IS A MUST.

But the best way to learn basic Chinese is to learn it in China. Especially one if its more slow paced, low pressure, backwaters like Kunming.

aiyaryarr (122 posts) • 0

I am a newbie in Kunming. I relocated here in late August, then went "home" in mid October to take care of some lose ends and came back in mid November. GoKunming Forum has been a great source of information for me on the good and bad side of life one might encounter in Kunming. I believe if we are obsessed with looking for the "bad", we'll never see the "good" and vice versa. I'd like to share a bit of the good with the following inspiring story of hope with you all:

Two months ago on Sunday, September 19, 2010, a Kunming native I know (I'll refer to her as "XL") got a call from a friend in need of help at the airport check-in counter. Upon arriving at the terminal, XL was on the way to look for her friend and encountered the following:

A seemingly 1.9M+, 150Kg+ (6-foot+ and 330-pound+) elderly male traveler in his seventies or eighties suddenly dropped onto the floor with his cane assisted wife stood immobilized in shock by his side. Everyone in his large Norwegian tour group, including the local Chinese tour guides seem helplessly hypnotized.

XL immediately rushed over to the man lying on the airport terminal floor and found he had no pulse and not breathing. His face was paper white. XL, in a semi-panic reaction, screamed out in English: "Somebody help me, please call 114"! (114 is China's directory assistance number, she actually meant 120, one of China's equivalents for 911). The whole airport terminal population became curious spectators while XL, without missing a beat, recalled what she had learned back in her pharmacy college days on Chinese pressure points relating to this type of situations and applied them on the man's face & hands. With the photo images I had recently shown her on the Heimlich maneuver, that included the CPR hand position, flashing freshly in her mind along with what she had read on the internet, XL started to administer CPR with all the might her diminutive 43.5Kg (90-pound) self can muster. XL's little hands and physical strength were being challenged beyond belief because the man was nearly a foot taller and nearly 3.5 time XL's weight.

Miraculously, after a very long 60 seconds or so, the man started to breathe, regained his pulse and opened his eyes. The airport spectators instantly came out of their trance and applauded in unison. XL shyly took a bow and with much pride in her heart softly uttered "Thank you." to the admiring crowd. Just as miraculously, the EMT showed up minutes afterward.

As the EMT transported the man towards the ambulance, XL pressed the man's hand and asked: "Are you OK"? The man did not answer but blinked his eye as if to say: "I am fine". The above is another story you hear about and think it only happens to others in the news or see in the movies. Not so, because I am proud to announce that the heroine in the story is my girlfriend and future wife!

Happy Thanksgiving to all!

JJ and Janice (324 posts) • 0

Always great to read/hear a positive story. I believe you can find good folks everywhere - - sometimes just have to look! Sounds like you have a great one.

Cheers - - JJ

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