Wow. I cannot believe my time in China is officially half way over. I guess time flies when you are having fun. I have learned so much over the past three months while living in China. There have been many obstacles, challenges, and confusion. However, with all of that there has been lots of new friendships, learning, growth and lots and lots of love. It takes a certain kind of person to want to live abroad. But, It take a lot of guts to move to China. Especially not knowing anything about the country, except the typical stereo types. I pictured China as this very strict, communist country before arriving here. While there are many interesting rules I don’t quite understand in the government, this country is anything but strict. It is full of some of the most interesting and talented people I have ever met. I look forward to my last three months in China. I hope they are as special as the first three have been!
Viewing entries tagged
Interning in China
As soon as you walk in you're immersed with dark woods and low mood lighting, an impressive collection of fine whiskies behind the bar and a beautiful patio and outdoor space I imagine would be packed in the summer time. Downstairs they got the ultimate lad pad- with a pool table, arcade games and foosball- the ultimate escape. I fell in love with the sexy and sultry atmosphere of the venue. I came back one day sold on the idea of ladies night- live music and free martinis until midnight for the girls. And not just any martinis- top class blueberry and lavender martinis. They were absolutely succulent. Later on in the night one of my friends won their regular dance competitions, which was absolutely hilarious because she is by far the goofiest dancer I have ever seen. Brought some aerobics moves on the dance floor she learned from doing Heyrobics in Beijing. Anyway, she won because the general manager, (my now Boss and supervisor) wittingly and unfailingly seduces every girl onto the dance floor- regardless of how bad they are at dancing, or how much they hate to do it or even how long a day you have had- he will unfailingly get you up there and you'll love every minute of it. Genuinely.
I thought doing an internship that was hospitality based would give me the best opportunity to practice my Chinese with staff and clients- which it does. We have two staff meetings a day one with hotel staff and other restaurant managers and another with the specific venue staff and its for the most part all in Chinese. Which is great because it trains my ear and gets me hearing Chinese in a more practical and business setting. But its incredibly overwhelming. The first few days I was feeling like… how am I going to do this? I don't speak Chinese! Which isn't exactly true I have been learning it for two years but haven't taken enough opportunities to speak it. One night it suddenly clicked- everyone came by on what seemed to be a slow Friday night around 12 o’clock demanding to see the World Cup match Germany versus France. The place was completely packed- we had to move around tables and stools so people could see and the crowd was bustling with Germans, French, English, Chinese, Americans, Japanese- everyone was there, and everyone wanted to drink. So there wasn't any time for me to sit around on the sidelines anymore I had to jump right on in, getting drinks, clearing tables, getting more food, talking to other customers, talking to the staff so I was using English and Chinese and trying to think on my feet about what to do. So it was great.
But for most of the time I am working on helping the venue increase their clientele on Weixin. We recently introduced another promotion- Whisky Wednesdays so I had to come up with some catchy slogan to attract customers. I was playing around with the legacy of Whisky: Whisky, because its sexy. Whisky Wednesdays, because Friday is still two days away. Shoot whisky not guns, unless you're a cowboy then do both. Finally asked the bartender what our best selling whistles were- Glenlivet, Habiki and Ardbeg. After playing around a little bit with that here’s slogan we came up with: Ardbeg, Hibiki, Glenlivet. Xian’s most popular whiskies. Or what you’ll sound like after you have 5. Come find out on Whisky Wednesdays. Then that got sent out Saturday. After having so many internships where I was sitting at a desk, twiddling my thumbs and on my phone it was so refreshing to come up with an idea, pitch it and have it released for the brand within a week.
But even more than that, I was coming up with ideas about how to host the World Cup final party. This particular venue has such a strong support network, it seems the possibilities are almost endless. Want some big skewers so we can have a Brazilian inspired midnight feast? Sure! Want some Samba dancers to come by and perform right before the big game? Sure! My boss loves the creativity, loves going all out and its really refreshing to have that kind of dynamic as an intern. Ah and then lastly, I helped edit a promo video for the venue to be posted on their official account and another longer version which will be projected on the big screen at Sanlintun Taikooli- a huge win for us. I’ve only been working five days and I feel like I have accomplished more in this one week than I have in my last five or six summers as an intern or employee anywhere else.