At the end of June 2017, while riding my scooter between Ajaccio and Vizzavona, I had a spark, like that of St. Paul on the way to Damascus.
It’s been a while since I wanted to find a new activity (my life was getting quite boring: work –> run –> girlfriend and repeat).
In few words, I wanted more than all of that.
At that time my partner was a chinese student at local university in Turin and she was going to end a stage on the local Confucius Institute, a sort of tentacle of (a sort of) chinese culture ministry to teach language and culture worldwide: the 汉办.
I heard that they were the best in chinese teaching in Turin, so i decided to undertake the voyage.
So far (9.20), it’s been 3 years that I’ve been studying chinese (let’s say 2, 1 has been a sort of “passive learning”…), i got HSK3 certificate in spring 2019 and, unfortunately, there is much that is still unclear to me.
Some useful consideration for beginners:
- The more you study, the more you improve.
- You need a lot of planning and a clear goal. It all depends on the answer to the question “Why do i do it?”. Like everything in life. For example, in my job, I have may contacts with China, and I travelled many times over there. It’s much easier to travel if you can communicate. HSK4 with an above average mark is my final goal.
- Do a lot of speaking, local chinese restaurants or bazaar are OK. Practice makes perfect.
- Enjoy those moments, it’s not all about results. Sharing a love object is the best way to make good friends.
- Hourly cost was around 7 €/h. Consider also commuting.
- After many years of attemps, you will get frustrated and you’ll notice that HSK4 is an A2 level according to CEFR: “Waystage or elementary”. Disappointing.