Tuesday, October 11, 2016

Lianghuan Tan
10/11 2016
Lost in translation-final draft
A lonely New Immigrant
My elementary school classmate has a son studying in a kindergarten while I am still attending college now. Youth usually get married in their mid twenties in China, but I moved to the United States when I was twenty-five years old. Unfortunately, I had no girlfriend before I came to Chicago because of my busy work schedule. After I immigrated, I realized that new immigrants probably can’t find a girlfriend when they are starting a new life. It is hard for me to find a girlfriend in the United States because of different language, different personalities and my tough economic situation.
Since I arrived in Chicago, I haven’t been able to make Chinese-American friends because I can’t communicate easily with them. Even though there are many Chinese signs in Chinatown, many Chinese who were born in Chicago don’t speak Chinese well. I once talked to a young Chinese-American woman and she just could understand half the words that I was saying. I heard Chinese-American teenagers speak English fluently while I was reading a book in the Chinatown library, but I only understood a few sentences that they were saying. In fact, they are good at speaking English instead of speaking Cantonese. I am worried that they would laugh at my accent and I am afraid to talk to them.
I dont only miss my friends in China but also miss the personalities of women in China. Chinese-Americans and new Chinese immigrants have different personalities, so it is hard for me to find a Chinese-American girlfriend. Most of young women in China are kind of shy and passive. When I talk to a young woman in China, she probably replies me with a few words. The personalities of Chinese-Americans are more similar to the personalities of Americans. They are more outgoing and most of them are good at communicating. I once talked to a Chinese woman who was born in Chicago, she kidded herself which surprised me. She said: “ my feet are so short that I can’t walk fast.” Some of them use a lot of make up and dress sexier than those who come from China. These changes have made it hard for me to find a girlfriend in Chicago.
In addition, other changes have happened. I am going through tough economic situation that doesn’t allow me to consider getting married. I had a well-paid job when I was in China, and I probably could have gotten married a couple of years later. After I arrived in Chicago, the underpaid and hard work in Chinatown restaurants disappointed me. I was unwilling to work in a restaurant for the rest of my life, so I made a hard decision to get a bachelor’s degree. Now I am a full-time student and pay tuition with financial aid. I only spend 20 dollars on food each week. I have to focus on studying instead of earning money, so I have no money to get married.
These difficulties including language, personalities and finance issues bother me all the time, but I have to overcome all of them. I study hard everyday and improve my study habits in order to pick up English as soon as possible. Accepting different personalities and behaving more like Americans might enable me have a lot of friends. After picking up English, I will get a part-time job. I hope I will have a girlfriend soon and maybe even have a baby when my classmate’s child attends elementary school.

1 comment:

  1. Nice essay. I think we have the same experience, so I know exactly how you feel. I used to be a manager in China, but after I came here, my degree is so far worthless. I am not good in English, so it doesn't matter what degree I have in China, I still can't work in the office. I have to work in a restaurant too. Let's study hard and get a better degree here and soon we can have the life back as how we wanted. :)


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