Okay so itâ€™s been a while since my last postâ€¦.what can I say Iâ€™m having a great time! Well after spending close to two months in Jinan life just gets easier and easier.
Letâ€™s get started with the class load. If you are coming to Shandong University to study Mandarin be prepared for an intense class load. Depending on your skill level, which is determined by a placement test, you will have roughly 20-25 hours of classes a week. The amount of time spent in the classroom should be a testament to how well your Mandarin improves.
Letâ€™s talk about food. Jinan is way cheaper than other big cities like Beijing and Shanghai; I can honestly say that you can eat three meals a day for about 3-5 US Dollars. Obviously the majority of the cuisine offered in Jinan is Chinese; however, there are variety of other choices such as Italian, Japanese, and Pakistani. Also located on Shandong Universityâ€™s campus is a four-story cafeteria with a variety of Chinese selections. If you are having a hard time adjusting to authentic Chinese cuisine, there is always McDonalds and KFC both of which are walking distance from the campus. If you want to do grocery shopping there are plenty of grocery stores located in Jinan. The one that most international students go to is Carrefour.
Letâ€™s move on to transportation. The main modes of transportation in China is walking or riding a bike. A bike can be purchased in Jinan for about 100 RMB. Public transportation in Jinan is very cheap and pretty convenient. A bus ride costs 1 RMB and taxi meters start out at 7.50 RMB.
All in all the lifestyle in Jinan is pretty simple. The people in Jinan are very nice and welcoming of foreigners. Though Jinan is quite small, it is located close to major cities like Beijing and Qingdao (three and a half hours by train). If you ever feel the need to get away, you are only a train ride away. Well thatâ€™s all for now, until next time. Zai-jian!