Last June, I attended the 16th Annual Meeting of the International Society of Quality-of-Life Society in Hong Kong to present a paper I wrote during the first year of my PhD. I also took the chance to visit Mainland China (Beijing, Shanghai and Hangzhou), learn some Chinese and participate in the Dragon Boat Festival which is a day full of traditions, joy and feast which was recently declared World Intangible Heritage by the UNESCO.
Because of all the warnings that we were given in all the pre-departure sessions (such as to avoid crowded places or not to eat certain kinds of food such as poultry), I was a bit worried before leaving. However, everything went fine eventually and I really enjoyed my trip.
Another thing that scared me a bit was the language since I did not know any Chinese before travelling to China. Thanks to the help of my Chinese friends who live in the student accommodation I live in, and by also studying some Chinese in Hong Kong, I was able to learn some basic sentences which proved of great help during my stay (especially when ordering food or asking where the toilet was).
Apart from that, I also learnt some key facts about Chinese culture including the history of the Dragon Boat Festival.
Below are some pictures of my trip – I hope it will give you a flavour of what my trip looked like!