Search Results for: field trips

Field Trips: Updated Information

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A local friend and I plan to organize a series of field trips for the spring and early summer. I have included the dates and locations we plan to go below. The events will be once every 2 weeks. We will have a large charter bus that will pick up at Gong Da’s West gate a, the bridge (gu lou) and at the corner of ZhaoWuDa and ErDuoSi (just south of Shi Da’s east gate at Bin Yue Hotel) and then take us to the events. Lunch will be provided and is included in the price.

Here’s the list of events and prices:

Tuesday April 8: South Lake Wetlands Park, adults 80 RMB, children 80 RMB
leave from Gong Da at 9:00, gu lou 9:15, and Bin Yue at 9:30, return at 1:00 pm

Saturday April 26: berry/fruit/vegetable picking, adults 85 RMB, children 85 RMB
The cost does not include the produce you pick, which with the group discount will be 55 RMB/jin
leave from Bin Yue at 9:00, gu lou 9:15 and Gong Da at 9:30, return at 1:00 pm

Wednesday May 7: Botanical Gardens adults 80 RMB, children 80 RMB
leave from Gong Da at 9:00, gu lou 9:15, and Bin Yue at 9:30, return at 1:00 pm

Saturday May 24: Wu-Yi Shui Ku adults 130, children 110
This price includes the entrance fee and the required insurance fee
leave from Bin Yue at 9:00, gu lou 9:15 and Gong Da at 9:30, return at 2:00 pm

Friday June 6: Zoo adults 155 RMB, children 115 RMB
This price includes the entrance fee. Unfortunately, we did not have the numbers required to obtain a group discount
leave from Bin Yue at 9:00, gu lou 9:15 and Gong Da at 9:30, return at 1:00 pm
Saturday June 21: Yi Li factory tour adults 85 RMB, children 85 RMB
leave from Bin Yue at 9:00, gu lou 9:15 and Gong Da at 9:30, return at 2:00 pm
More important details:

These events are open to anyone so feel free to invite local friends who have kids. We hope it will provide interaction with locals for our children and time for us to have meaningful conversations with other moms (and/or dads). And yes! Dads are welcomed to come! If you don’t have kids, you are also welcomed!

For those bringing a stroller: Please stow it in the under-carriage storage of the bus when you get on. Please mark or identify it clearly so that there is no mix-up and so that we can quickly load and unload.

The bus company will have insurance that will cover any accident/event that happens while on the bus. If you would like to purchase additional insurance, we can put you in contact with a company where you can do so. If not, when you get on the bus you will need to sign a waiver stating that neither Shan Cai Hong nor Jill Judd will be responsible for any accidents, injuries, or losses.

Contact Shan Cai Hong (Rainbow) for more information 18686031221 or to make your reservation. You may also make a reservation by leaving a comment here, calling/texting Jill at 18747977365, or by sending an email to asiajudds@gmail.com.

 
相关费用及明细出台。闪彩虹的个人信息,请了解。如帮转发,倍加感谢亲爱的微友们,我决定在春暖花开之际,带着孩子与一些外国朋友及她们的孩子们,举行一些室外活动。让孩子们适应团体,增强沟通、拓展思维、双语学习。如大
家有意向带孩子参加,请提前报名。如果全时段无法确定,请确定第一次4月8日周二是否可以参加。(与闪彩虹联系:18686031221)我们将会统一收
费支付相关门票、统一租车费和车上餐点。孩子年龄最好在1岁以上。具体三个月的计划如下:(相关收费包括门票,车费,车上餐点。其中采摘基地根据各自需求
采摘数量直接支付老板。(团队价每斤55元,品质和周边环境优于别处)由于我们都各自带小孩去,请各自要注意自身安全,如果大家想上保险可自行安排上。)4月8日,周二,9:00-13:00:南湖湿地。(成人80元  小孩80元)巴士会在工大西门对面9:00出发,9:15在鼓楼十字路口烟草宾馆门口停车,9:30在师大东门南十字路口。路西停车。4月26日,周六,9:00-13:00:山东采摘 基地  (成人85   小孩85)巴士会在师大东门南十字路口路东9:00出发,9:15在鼓楼十字劝业门口停车,9:30在工大西门停车。

5月7日,周三,9:00-13:00:植物园   (成人80     小孩80)巴士会在工大西门对面9:00出发,9:15在鼓楼十字路口烟草宾馆门口停车,9:30在师大东门南十字路口。路西停车。

5月24日,周六,9:00-14:00:五一水库     (成人130     小孩110)巴士会在师大东门南十字路口路东9:00出发,9:15在鼓楼十字路口劝业门口停车,9:30在工大西门停车。

6月6日,周五,9:00-13:00:动物园      (成人155     小孩115)巴士会在师大东门南十字路口路东9:00出发,9:15在鼓楼十字路口劝业门口停车,9:30在工大西门停车。

6月21日,周六,9:00-14:00:伊利工厂(成人85    小孩85)巴士会在师大东门南十字路口路东9:00出发,9:15在鼓楼十字路口劝业门口停车,9:30在工大西门停车。

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Field Trips!

mmexport1394973509170
A local friend and I plan to organize a series of field trips for the spring and early summer. I have included the dates and locations we plan to go below. The events will be once every 2 weeks. The price (I know this will be an important factor) is yet to be determined, but I will let you know as soon as possible. We will do our best to keep the cost low.

We will have a large charter bus that will pick up at Gong Da’s West gate, the bridge (gu lou) and at the corner of ZhaoWuDa and ErDuoSi (just south of Shi Da’s east gate) and then take us to the events. Lunch will be provided and included in the price.

These events are open to anyone so feel free to invite local friends who have kids. We hope it will provide interaction with locals for our children and time for us to have meaningful conversations with other moms (and/or dads).

We also intentionally chose different days of the week so that if a certain day doesn’t work you can still come to another event on another day. We will leave (from the first pick up location) at 9:00 and return by 1:00.

Here’s the list of events:

Tuesday April 8: South Lake Wetlands Park
Saturday April 26: berry/fruit/vegetable picking
Wednesday May 7: Botanical Gardens
Saturday May 24: Wu-Yi Shui Ku(This one is a bit farther so we’ll return
at 2:00 on that day)
Friday June 6: Zoo
Saturday June 21: swimming or tour YiLi or Meng Niu factory (suggestions
for which is better are appreciated)

Contact Shan Cai Hong (Rainbow) for more information 18686031221.

来自闪彩虹的个人信息,请了解。如帮转发,倍加感谢~
我决定在春暖花开之际,带着孩子与一些外国朋友及她们的孩子们,举行一些室外活动。让孩子们适应团体,增强沟通、拓展思维、双语学习。如大家有意向带孩子参加,请提前报名。(与闪彩虹联系:18686031221)我们将会统一收费支付相关门票、统一租车费和车上餐点。孩子年龄最好在1岁以上。具体三个月的计划如下:
4月8日,周二,9:00-13:00:南湖湿地。
4月26日,周六,9:00-13:00:郊外采摘
5月7日,周三,9:00-13:00:植物园
5月24日,周六,9:00-14:00:五一水库
6月6日,周五,9:00-13:00:动物园
6月21日,周六,9:00-14:00:伊利工厂或者水上乐园(待定)。

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Field Trip Update #2

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Saturday was the second of the series of field trips for the spring and summer. This trip was to Shan Dong Produce Fields to pick strawberries and vegetables. We had 51 participants!

Join us next time on May 7th to the Botanical Gardens.

Wednesday May 7: Botanical Gardens adults 80 RMB, children 80 RMB
leave from Gong Da at 9:00 and Bin Yue at 9:30, return at 1:00 pm

Saturday May 24: Wu-Yi Shui Ku adults 130, children 110
This price includes the entrance fee and the required insurance fee
leave from Bin Yue at 9:00 and Gong Da at 9:30, return at 2:00 pm

Friday June 6: Zoo adults 155 RMB, children 115 RMB
This price includes the entrance fee.
leave from Bin Yue at 9:00 and Gong Da at 9:30, return at 1:00 pm

Saturday June 21: Yi Li factory tour adults 85 RMB, children 85 RMB
leave from Bin Yue at 9:00 and Gong Da at 9:30, return at 2:00 pm

5月7日,周三,9:00-13:00:植物园(成人80 小孩80)巴士会在工大西门对面9:00出发,9:30在师大东门南十字路口。路西停车。

5月24日,周六,9:00-14:00:五一水库(成人130小孩110)巴士会在师大东门南十字路口路东9:00出发,9:30在工大西门停车。

6月6日,周五,9:00-13:00:动物园(成人155小孩115)巴士会在师大东门南十字路口路东9:00出发,9:15在鼓楼十字路口劝业门口停车,9:30在工大西门停车。

6月21日,周六,9:00-14:00:伊利工厂(成人85小孩85)巴士会在师大东门南十字路口路东9:00出发,9:30在工大西门停车。

Dear Customs Officials

This post serves as a PSA of sorts. If you ever find yourself receiving a package that gets stuck in customs, here is our experience and how we got our salad dressing released from customs “prison.”

 

We recently received a package from a dear friend. The package was full of small individual packets of salad dressing. I asked for them to use on our field trips this summer.
Anyway, the box was big and had a large quantity of these dressings, which meant it was stopped by customs. We got an email from them saying we could have the package when we submitted our business license and import license. What? We didn’t have either of those things, nor were we planning on selling the dressing. It took two local friends helping us to get our salad dressing released from customs prison. Turns out, the letter of the law says you can send no more than 10 of any one item. Clearly, we had more than ten packets in there. And we don’t have an import license. So, our next requirement was that we had to submit a letter explaining that they are for personal use and beg for the release of our salad dressing.

I felt inconvenienced and bothered that we were having to call and write letters and go to so much trouble just to get some salad dressing that a loving friend had already paid full shipment price for.
Our local friend wrote the letter to China customs on our behalf to save us the time it would take us to compose such a letter in Chinese.

Below is google translate’s version of that letter in English. Perhaps you can use it as a template of sorts if you find yourself in the same situation.

Dear hard-working Chinese customs officers :
Our whole family for your work extra burden apologize !
We very much enjoy living and working here . However , the eating habits, our family is very special to miss some American food seasoning . Difficult for us to buy these spices from China . So we had to let our relatives and friends in the United States to our mailing these spices. For ease of use , our friends have specially selected individually wrapped , and small size, light weight mailed to us .
We have not asked in detail about the conditioning requirements for customs inspection of China , it is our fault.
We just would like to affirm that all of these spices is to us a man consumed spices . Our families are more like the small package mailed spices , everyone will use several meal , so all of these spices that we will soon be finished .
After this experience we know that the relevant provisions of China Customs , and later we will strictly comply with these requirements .
Thank you !

Aside from the humor of the letter, I just have to say, it’s nice to have friends. Even on my best day it is doubtful that I could have humbled myself to the point of saying sorry for causing a burden to the customs officials when I felt like the situation was reversed or admitted fault in the situation.

Anyway, we’re enjoying our salad dressing now. And we’re thankful for the friend who sent it and the friends who helped us get it to our door step.

We did have to pay and additional 61 RMB is taxes and a fee that allowed the shipping company to act on our behalf at China Customs.

recent (lack of) updates

Sorry not much new has been posted on the blog. I did add a page for the photo galleries and will work on getting more of my photos up. We’ve also added more products to our gift selections.

 

And while I’m writing…about the spring/summer field trips:

We had one planned for tomorrow June 6th, but my partner needed to cancel it and thought that most people wouldn’t want a big outing for their kids right after a big weekend with Duan Wu Jie and Children’s Day falling on the same weekend.

So, we still will have one more field trip towards the end of June. We’ll post the information here as it gets closer. It will be the last one for the season and we’ll go to Wu Yi Shui Ku. Hope you can join us! And sorry for any inconvenience with the schedule changes and cancellations.

 

 

Expat Life

How many expats are in Hohhot?
Good question. I get asked this all the time. My response is also a question….what do you mean by “foreigner?” Do you mean Westerners? Do you mean anyone who is not Asian? Do you mean anyone who is not holds a passport from a country other than China?

If one assumes we are counting all foreign passport holders my best guest is roughly 5000. Although in 11/2015 the clinic where all foreigners have to get their yearly health exams told me they processed “hao ji qian” (quite a few thousand)

Here is how I reached that number:

English Training schools: This number is hard to know because the number of these schools hiring foreigners is increasing rapidly. Also, there is some overlap since some of these schools hire part time teachers who would be counted in another category (students, perhaps). =a few hundred, possibly nearing 1000

University teachers: 10+ universities with 10ish teachers each. Some have more, some have less and we’re counting all foreign teachers (Japanese, German, Russian, English, Mongolian, etc)=a few hundred

University foreign students: 600-700 at Nei Da, plus Hong De, Shi Da, Gong Da, Nong da= roughly 1000??

Foreign workers other than teachers=I’m including Asian businessmen from Malaysia, Singapore, Taiwan, etc.=a few hundred

Mongolians=several thousand. It’s my understanding they don’t need a visa if they leave every 30 days so they can just run to the border and back each month. I know there are many marriages where one spouse is from Outer Mongolia and there are many others here working. I know most wouldn’t count them as “foreigners” because of the cultural similarities and the language and because they don’t stick out that much, but for the purpose of this post we’re counting all non-Chinese citizens.

Again, this is nothing official, just my best guess.

There are also a large number of western businessmen who come through for the dairy or mining industry but they generally only arrive at their hotel, go out to the dairy or mining site, return to the hotel, and fly back out. From my experience working at the hotel they generally don’t have time to socialize.

There are also probably another few hundred Hohhot locals who have traveled abroad to gain citizenship to another country but who live in Hohhot currently. Since we’re counting foreign passport holders here, they’d be included in the count. 

What is the expat community like?

I wouldn’t yet say that there is an “expat community” in Hohhot. Mostly, the expats here are still largely unconnected to one another. Some have groups of friends, but those groups of friends may or may not know the other groups.

The other problem is even if they wanted to know each other, businessmen and university teachers work a business day-like schedule. The private training school teachers work evenings and weekends generally, meaning the two groups don’t often cross paths.

 

Are there frequent expat gatherings?

Pub Quiz Weekly on Tuesday night

Hohhot International Church meets on Sundays

Yes. But I’d say they only happen in small groups, not in big events where everyone is together. There are wechat groups that the expats use to connect with one another.

Many of the private school teachers hang out on Sunday evenings since Monday is generally a day off for many of them.

There are also many other events arranged by other groups and we’ll post that information when it’s provided to us. Also check out the forum for other events.

In the past, this website has partnered with the Air China Phoenix Hotel to host a monthly expat gathering. If you’d like to be included on the mailing list for such events, sign up below.

Sign up for the EXPAT EXCHANGE mailing list

What countries are represented?

Again, I don’t have any official statistics, but in my time here, I have known or known of people from the following countries: Mongolia, Japan, Russia, Korea, Finland, Czech Republic, Australia, UK, Poland, USA, Canada, Spain, Belgium, Philippines, Singapore, Malaysia, Denmark, South Africa, Togo, Nigeria, Liberia, Jamaica, Germany, Cambodia, Jordan, Pakistan, and Egypt.

How do foreigners connect with other foreigners?

I think mostly through introduction by a mutual friend, whether that friend be a foreigner or local. We hope this website and the EXPAT EXCHANGE can help expats in Hohhot connect with one another. Please check out the forum leave a comment on the blog if you’d like to connect or have questions.

There are also several wechat groups. You can follow me at hohhotjill and I can invite you to the groups.

Other things to know

1. If you’re coming here to study, you should learn what you can about your school. I have links to most of the universities with foreign students here.

If you’re coming to teach at a private school or at a university you should understand the terms of your contract clearly. Although I personally have never been a teacher, the most common complaint I hear is that the schools always want you to work more than is stated in the contract.

You should also understand China’s visa laws and policies and understand what kind of work is (or is not allowed) for your visa type.

2. Hohhot is cold. (understatement, right?) The winter is generally seven months long. The public central heating turns on November 15th and off April 15th. The climate is dry and generally there isn’t much snow or rain. You should be prepared with lots of warm clothes. However, most places indoors have more than adequate heating.

3. It’s my personal opinion that Hohhot is a city where you need to be able to speak at least basic Chinese in order to survive. You may be able to survive without it, but you will not thrive. As stated earlier, they expat community is still relatively small and the number of locals with a high level of English is not like in other larger cities in China. I always hear taxi drivers or shopkeepers tell me stories about the foreigners they meet who don’t speak Chinese and the ways they try to communicate with them.  You may be able to have a few classmates or co-workers as friends, but you will not be able to develop the social network needed for successful living here without some Chinese.

Previous posts about expat life in Hohhot

Field trips/Family Outings

Expat Life Posts

Getting a Driver’s License

Visa Information

More Visa Information

Buying Used Furniture

Buying Imported Grocery Items

Medical Care

cost of living in Hohhot

renting a car

Finding a House

top ten things we’ve experienced here

housing posts

finding a gym

10 Strange Things about Hohhot

sign up on expat mailing list

date ideas

Why I call Hohhot Home

My Dreams for Hohhot

books about Hohhot