Monkey Abroad

Videos and stories of the life abroad – food, culture, travel & work

(VIDEO) First Impressions of China


Okay, so I just recently wrote an article about my first impressions of China. But since it has been so long since my last video upload, I decided it would be fun to create a short video version of my first impressions. Watch and enjoy!

In the video I go on a rant about my first impressions of China. Chinese language, spitting, smoking, government, chopsticks and driving are the topics covered. It’s all in good fun.


The tones of the Chinese language are outrageously difficult to understand and apply. For example: má = linen, mā = mom, mà = curse word, and mǎ = horse. That goes for the rest of the language as well. To understand this language is to live and die by tones, and westerners are tone-deaf as far as the Chinese are concerned.


Chinese guys spit, and I’m not talking about discreet spitting. It’s loud, guttural clearing-of-the-throat spitting. Indoors or outdoors. From what I’ve noticed, Chinese dudes spit most often when there’s a lull in conversation, like a way to break up an awkward silence.


China is a really conservative country that doesn’t seem to be aware that cigarettes cause cancer. Like the USA during the 1950s. Get with the times, China.


I’ve lived here for three weeks and I’ve only been arrested and tortured once. Granted, I was talking about democracy in a public park, so I had it coming. Kidding aside, I haven’t personally been affected by the government at all.

Food (chopsticks)

It’s common knowledge that Chinese people eat with chopsticks. When they see me eating with chopsticks, if I’m not dropping food all over myself, they’re so impressed. I’m not an infant! Yes, it’s possible to have friends of Asian American descent and to eat at a Japanese, Chinese or Vietnamese restaurant in America.


China’s roadways are a deathtrap of unnecessary aggression and horn-honking. I thought Thailand’s driving was insane, but China definitely takes the cake. China is home to the worst drivers in the world as far as I’m concerned.


Again, these are just first impressions of China. I’ve only lived here for three weeks so I’m not an authority on Chinese culture. This video and the article are purely my opinion.

Thanks for watching!

Author: Kevin Cook

I want to inspire you to pursue your own dream of traveling and/or living overseas!


  1. Loved this video! Looking forward to more!

  2. Hey Kevin,

    Great video you should do more. I have subscribed to you on Youtube, would be great if you subscribe back. Good luck in China.

  3. Man, you killed that banana.

  4. Haha I literally died when you were eating that banana…

    I regress… so many similarities between China and Korea : spitting, smoking, chopsticks…

    Do they have a huge drinking culture in China?

    • Haha, thanks. But it’s just a banana!
      The drinking culture in China is outrageous. In business dinner, I’ve heard that it’s socially favorable to get wasted. Don’t ever turn down rice liquor if it is offered.

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