Feelings on Coming to the United States

The first day I came to the United States, my biggest feeling is that Americans are very enthusiastic and friendly. At the airport, everyone took the initiative to help us, seeing that we were holding the fast track sign and letting us move forward. It was very late when I arrived in the Minneapolis / Saint Paul airport. The host family took the sign to pick me up. They asked me if I was tired and hungry, and I felt very enthusiastic. When we arrived at the host family’s house, they introduced me to the layout of the home, which was great. The next day, the host family took me to their church and introduced me to many of their friends. Those who I was not introduced to would greet me on their own initiative.

   Although I have only been here for a few days, I can also feel some differences between the United States and China.

   First, in terms of religious beliefs. Most Americans believe in religion and believe in God. According to Christian beliefs, every person is the son of God. Christianity pays attention to fraternity, and this value is also reflected in the relationship between people. Christianity emphasizes that human happiness stems from the grace of God. However, only a minority in China believes in Christianity.

    Second, in terms of friendship. The education of Chinese people is usually to avoid direct conflicts, open criticism, and controversial topics.They want to maintain harmony among people around them and leave ”faces” for others; on the contrary, Americans are usually willing to face problems directly, criticize, discuss controversial issues, and insist on what they consider to be ”facts”.

  Third, in the terms of living habits.  Lifestyle choices between the United States and China are also different. For example, Americans like to use forks and knives when eating, Chinese people generally use chopsticks; Americans like to eat burgers, Chinese people like to eat dumplings, Americans usually like to bathe in the morning, Chinese people prefer to take a shower at night, etc.

    Although there are many cultural differences between the United States and China, there are still many things that I need to learn. There are many places that China needs to learn from. We learn from each other and believe that we will do better in the future.

Feelings on Bicultural Healthy Living

Nowadays, Bicultural Healthy Living is more and more popular all over the world. As a Chinese volunteer, I feel honored to experience the two cultures of the United States and China, which are quite different from each other.

As far as diet is concerned, most Chinese food is fried and boiled, while after spending time with native people in the United States, I found the food is mostly roasted. American people eat fresh vegetable salad to add vitamins but Chinese people prefer scrambled eggs with tomatoes or fried cabbage.They like butter or cheese but Chinese people like salt or sauce to make food delicious. I think we should use a small amount of salt or cheese to supplement the protein needed for one day. In addition, Chinese people usually drink hot water not cold water to promote metabolism in the body. People go to the restaurant to eat, where warm water is generally available.

When it comes to living habit, different people hold different attitudes. From my point of view, in China, people use slippers at home and don’t like to walk barefoot on the marble floor at home otherwise they will feel the cold into the body and think it is uncomfortable. But in the United States, people like to walk barefoot on the wooden floor at home. In order to keep biculturally healthy, I would recommend that keep your feet warm in winter and comfortable in summer.

In America, I think most people regard cars as main transportation.They just drive their cars to go sightseeing or order food at McDonald’s. However, in China, especially in Beijing, because of the large population, some vehicles are restricted to travel to control traffic jam, which depends on number plates. A lot of people walk to and take the subway or go to a bus stop. Sometimes buses and subways are more convenient. In my opinion, bicycles are also great ways to get around and keep fit. If the destination is far away, we can choose to drive, if the road is closer, riding a bicycle is better.


Bicultural Healthy Living

Bicultural healthy living is increasingly recognized by all. Many students in China choose to study abroad or volunteer, which more and more people begin to accept cultural diversity.

Communication is an important mean of expressing yourself because it exists different ways of expression and so different kind of communication depending on the culture you belong to.

Bicultural and diversified is essential if we want to know more about culture. That is why cross-cultural communication is an essential exercise to do. A person who come from a certain country does not a certain country does not necessarily get the same ideas about dietary habit, time, identity.

I have an opportunity to volunteer in the United States so that I cherish this opportunity of cultural exchange very much. There is no doubt that this experience will be unforgettable.

My host family is in Saint Paul. I live with two Chinese friends called Grace and Leslie. The hostess of host family is Gayle. She is a French teacher at the university of Minnesota. Objects of Chinese and American food from eating the contents, Chinese people eat vegetables every day, much more than Americans, although Americans eat a lot of protein everyday.

However, there are two sides to everything. To illustrate, I’m not used to the food here, which they like to eat some healthy food such as mushroom and pumpkins. To a great extent, it was a difficult process for me to adapt to this diet. I, however, think is a very good opportunity to experience life in America, so I firmly believe that it’s not a great challenge for me.

I know that there are great cultural differences between the American and China, I know that there will be many challenges such as communication in the next four weeks. But, I am greatly convinced that I will be able to adapt to the language environment here.