19.02.2013 - 16.02.2013 9 °C
This blog is for my trip to China which starts on Sunday for 6 months. It is going to be my main contact with home and friends so hopefully no more large email chains(and run-ins with islamist riots and lynch mobs!!)
Where: I will be teaching english for about 5 months at a sixth form boarding college in Suzhou, Jiangsu Province. I then plan to travel for at least a month but have no idea where...ideas please!
When: From February to August(maybe even to September!)
Why: After an amazing volunteer placement in Zanzibar(and a month traveling around East Africa) I thought China would be a fun change. My placement in Zanzibar was in a small rural village called Makunduchi whereas my China placement is based in Suzhou, a city of 6 million people!
How: I have been able to find this placement through a charity called Lattitude Global Volunteering who send volunteers to many other countries as well as China.
Who: I think our cohort is about 30 people and we are all spending a week having a teacher training course in Kunming, Yunnan province. For my main placement, I am going with another volunteer called Alastair!
So some more detail on where I am going. Suzhou is a medium sized city of 6 million which is about 30mins from Shanghai by bullet train! When I do a google image search of Suzhou, pictures like this come up...
That's because Suzhou is very famous for it's many classical chinese gardens! Although I am expecting to see at least one idyllic garden, Suzhou is now meant to be very industrial so I'm more expecting this!! Either way, I can't wait to find out what it is really like (but I'm going to find a surgical mask just incase).
P.s. Here's a BBC news video on a skyscraper shaped like a pair of 'Pants' in Suzhou...