Hi, I'm Mick

mick

mick

I'm in my mid 20's and come from Australia. Only stayed in Hong Kong, but did a day trip to Guangzhou. I'd like to see the rest of China someday soon... just take a month off and see it all. It's a country that has always fascinated me. My initial interests were initially in everything Cantonese. I studied some wing chun, and really got into many of the classic films starring Jackie Chan and Sammo Hung etc... I want to learn Cantonese some day, but thought I'd study the official language of China first, rather than a specific dialect. I'm just finding out that there's some great film from the mainland too. Watched a film called "Beijing Bicycle" a bit back, and it really moved me. I'm appreciating Chinese culture as a whole now. So... I'm in a bit of a rut and need a new hobby. Something fresh and challenging. To be able to speak/read Chinese would be amazing for travel, and open up opportunities for me in the future I'm sure. My Prime Minister can speak fluent Mandarin, and this has further inspired me. He recommended that all Aussies' learn the language of probably our most important neighbour. Australia has a huge Chinese population too, so unlike say Japanese, the language will actually be useful outside of its Mother country. Anyway, you've just bought the Rocket course, so why not get your moneys worth and contribute!?
Lin-Ping

Lin-Ping

Hi Mick, welcome to Rocket Chinese. Australia is a beautiful country too! Yes, taking a month of to travel around China, sounds good. Who else has been to China before?
barryh

barryh

It is good to see some activity here and to get some idea of others who have an interest in another language. I guess by comaparison I am ancient. I am 70 years of age travelled much of the world over many years and always managed to speak some of the basics before visiting a new country. After many years of engineering and management studies were completed I decided to learn Chinese. After all Australia is a significant part of Asia and has a large, and growing, chinese population. I began private lessons in my office commencing 1988 and continued for five years. I recorded the session and would play the tape back each day as I travelled to and from my office. Over the ensuing years I had three trips to China one with an organised group and two doing my own thing. Some of the places I visited were Beijing, Shanghai, Xian, Guilin, Suzhou, Hangzhou, and of course several visits to Hong Kong. During these visits I found that my spoken Chinese was understood by most but the limited vocabulary I had made it difficult to understand all of the responses. I have many chinese friends here in Australia in fact my closest friends here are Chinese and are my "adopted" family. Unfortunately they speak cantonese. Since I am now retired and have the time I wanted to refresh my knowledge of Mandarin and after considering all the options I chose Rocket Chinese. Even though much of it I have covered before, I find it is an excellent way in which they have developed this program. I am leaning more words and also learning more about the grammar and the way in which the same word can be used in different ways.
Lin-Ping

Lin-Ping

Hi Barry, welcome to you too. Your Chinese must be very good after studying it for so long. That's impressive. Did you ever land in the old Hong Kong airport? Apparently that is an adventure of it's own when the plan flies past the sky scrapers and you feel like you could stretch your hand out and touch them, because it's so close!
barryh

barryh

Yes I have landed a few times at the old Hong Kong airport, and yes, it was an exciting landing. As for being good at Chinese, when I speak to someone who does not speak Chinese I sound good...however it is when you are in China and with locals who only speak Chinese either Putongha or another dialect, that you get to find out just how much you can understand. When you speak you know what you are saying and what you mean. But when a local has to underdstand you, then you know if you are really communicationg. It is then you get to know and understand how gratifying it is to speak another language.
billbattle

billbattle

Ni Hao, Nick and Berry, I'm Bill I have less of a story as to why I want to learn Chinese. I just want to learn at least another language. Living here in the US, I first considered Spanish due to our Spanish speaking neighbors in the south or French because of Canada to the north. But I work in engineering for a company that manufactures products in China. Then I realized that I have several engineering co workers that that their first language is Chinese. I often deal with intermediary companies that work with multiple companies in china whose first language is also Chinese. SO …. If I never even make to China, career wise Chinese is the best my choice for a second language and I will have the most opportunity to use. So here I am
punkman

punkman

Hi, my name is Ruddy. I think the main reason why I want to learn Chinese because I want to create the chinese version of my website, and later on, because I also want to go to China (not for vacation but to live there). Wish me luck in learning, friends! I also take a private Chinese language course 3 times a week to speed up my process even more!
charlie88

charlie88

Hi. I'm Charlie. I visited China for the first time this past November for ten days. I was in Beijing, Pinghu (near Shanghai), and Xi'an. I have determined to learn Mandarin and make a return visit. China is an amazing place! Regards

Ni hao! I'm a history teacher here in Texas. I enjoy learning languages (my favorite at the moment is Dutch) and knowing even a bit of a language makes relating class topics to "the real world" for my students. One of my majors (years ago!) was Latin, but that doesn't help much with Chinese. Although I've thought about studying Chinese in the past, we have a much more immediate reason to study NOW. Our son is a teacher in Seoul and is engaged to a lovely young lady from Shanghai (she's teaching at the same language school as our son). She speaks English, but her mother doesn't. I'd like to be able to talk to her mom. In fact, we are supposed to "chat" this weekend via "skype!" Zaijian, Glenda
Lin-Ping

Lin-Ping

Hi there, good luck with your skype call! Let us know if you need any specific expressions or need help with anything. You will have a chance to learn so much interesting things about Chinese culture by having your future daughter in law as part of your family. That's great.
Richard2009

Richard2009

Hi I'm Richard, I got interested in Chinese by way of a friend at work, she is chinese and comes from HK. She advised me to learn mandarin instead of cantonese as it has fewer tones and is supposidly easier to learn. I don't know about that, but as i think cantonese has 7 tones and i struggle with 4 she is probably right! I have been studying via another audio course for about 14 months so know quite a few words already, but as usual there is still plenty to learn and this course is certainly stretching me and adding extra dimension to my language skills. After my last course finished I was worried how to proceed but Rocket Chinese is very very good and the web site support and cultural updates make you feel part of a team, I am really enjoying learning! Especially now we are starting to cover writing, I would love to be able read and write a bit. I travel a lot to Singapore and hope to be there for longer periods soon so i should be able to use my chinese, even though everyone speaks english!
Lin-Ping

Lin-Ping

Hi there, that's great. I hope your friend will practice Chinese with you as well. If you have trouble with tones you should have a listen to the Bonus Audio Lesson on tones. I hope you find it helpful. Enjoy the course and have fun on your Chinese learning journey!
thea

thea

hi guys, i'm thea, i'm 21 and I'm from australia. I learnt mandarin at school when i was a kid but i've forgotten most of what i knew. I'm doing this course because i'm going to china for 7 weeks early next year, i'll even be there for the chinese new year festival. i think that being able to communicate with the locals makes the trip so much more enjoyable. Also I think learning chinese will be fun and this its a great way to put off doing my uni homework :D
JC604

JC604

Ni hao Wo jiao Jhansen. When I graduated from college I had a list of goals - learning a new language was the very first thing on the list. I picked Cantonese. I tried and failed using 'traditional' methods. After many many years, I learned about online programs available and did some homework. I landed on Rocket Languages. So far, I've made more progress in my first day than I did in the other programs in one week. My career background is in Medical Laboratory Science, but I'm leaning towards business and I feel learning Mandarin would benefit me greatly by opening more doors of opportunity. See you around. Zaijian Jhansen
KohDaWei

KohDaWei

Hi I am David, I have travelled to China four times now, and on the last visit married my Princess. I live here in Australia and am trying to learn Mandarin to be able to discuss life with her family. We anticipate she will move here next year to live with me. I was welcomed into my new wifes family with much respect and I intend to show them I am serious in learning the mother tongue. I have reviewed many teaching programs and found this to be one of the most compatible with my current busy lifestyle. It is easy to connect to and has many levels at which i can learn. In my travels to China is was lucky enough to trek through a village called Stonetown, and have stayed in Xianfan,Wuhan,Xian, Bejieng, Nanjing, Hangzhou. I also spent three days in a watertown called Xitang. Forget Venice (i have been there too), this would have to be the most romantic place on earth. The town is built on a small river, and is clean, cheap and full of activities. It is about an hour out of Shanghai by train and then bus then short walk, but heaven on earth. China has many great attractions to see and i am in awe of the sheer size and population. My study of Mandarin is a commitment i have made to understanding a beautiful culture and land.
Scotty

Scotty

Ni hao everyone, I'm from Scotland and I've been to Hong Kong and Shenzhen on a number of occasions. I've always been fortunate that my friends from HK have been with me in China, however on one occasion I went for some reflexology. The pain was excruciating and I couldn't tell the poor girl how sore it was!! This is just one reason for learning the language. Ultimately I'd love to move out there someday (I'm an aerospace engineer). My soon-to-be wife and I are heading out to HK (her first visit) in 4 weeks time for our honeymoon, so fingers crossed she falls in love with the place as much as I have. :lol: P
Lin-Ping

Lin-Ping

We will all cross our fingers for you! Enjoy the trip! :D
LezPNG

LezPNG

Hi Mick, I never thought I'd be learning Mandarin! I am 51 years old of cantonese heritage having been born in Papua New Guinea. Indeed I believe my ancestors went there around 1890 or 1900, some by accident and others as indentured labourers for the Germans. Anyway here I am in Sydney Australia. I can speak some Cantonese, although it is rather poor. Needless to say I cannot read or write. Our Prime Minister was the catalyst for me - I thought, if he can then surely I can and should be able to as well. My wife, who is also from PNG has learnt at Uni and is pretty good at it. My daughter has just returned from Beijing having spent 3 months at the Beijing Cultural and Language University. So .... I have a bit to catch up to! I chose this course because of the English explanations that are given during the lessons. I don't think I could cope otherwise. Maybe if I get really good at it, I might journey back to China and discover my roots. We'll see.
Master_Shake

Master_Shake

Ni hao, I want to learn Chinese because my wife is Chinese and her parents live in China and can only speak Chinese. It will be important to be able to speak with them and to help our future kids one day to speak with them.
Whitefrost

Whitefrost

Well to be honest, I would tell you the story but I think everyone already knows it. I am Ricky, the Rocket Chinese BLOG contest winner. In order to win, I had to share this story.
Lin-Ping

Lin-Ping

Hey there, why don't you share it again? For everyone who didn't see it on the blog? :D That would be lovely.
Springbok

Springbok

Ni hao, I'm Keith from the UK. Seems many of us have a common need to speak Chinese having married into the culture. I have an added incentive in that we have purchased a flat in Guangzhou to which we intend to retire in the (hopefully) not too distant future. I fell in love with my wife and China at first sight! What a beautiful country, rich in culture, diversity and contradiction. I'm a slow learner and am really struggling with Chinese, so if you have any tips..................
badwolf

badwolf

Hi I am Martin, an Aussie living and working in Switzerland. As a consultant for a Bank I made quite a lot of trips to Sichuan province over the last few years and met some great people. I was inspired to learn Chinese for many of the reasons already posted. Above all, I find it is a real challenge and quite different to my daytime work. I am lucky to have heaps of help online from colleagues and friends in China, and decided to give RocketC a go to see if I can make better progress with the language. regards Martin
popeye

popeye

HI , I guess this is the proper place to tell and encourage you with my chinese learning journey ,first off ,I got married to a taiwanese wife 4 years ago , but her parents speak "VERY" broken english , so I jumped into MANDARIN chinese immediately learning 10 minutes a week from word lists (effortlessly), and after 3 years I went to Taiwan and said ,ni hao to a few people and my response was *&^%$#@#$%^&^ , then a pause with a blank stare from both of us (a very strange feeling) After 3 years I mastered ni hao and zai jian ."ONLY" ni hao and zai jian??? , I thought I've gone stupid!!! . So Last year I invaded Chapters Bookstore and bought most of their boring chinese books, VERY BORING , TOO BORING so I decided to flip through the internet and found Rocket Chinese , It said 2 month money back guarantee , So I thought yes I'll do it for a month and a half and get my money back, he, he, he. But i got so caught up in the lessons and addicted to the mega audio game(starbucks level addiction) , UGH!!! I didn't have the complete set of 31 grammar lessons with audio in my email, (sigh) yes I was in love , I ran through the course daily up to 6.1 and mega audio with my awaited email GLORIES coming every week, EEEAAAHHH!!! I forgot it was now past 2 months ,,,, oh well i didn't care anyway , I could say long sentences ,Rocket chinese really did launch me past the dought demons of (I cant do this anymore.),,,,,well, Then i took a little break from Rocket and messed around with other programs and heard words from rocket chinese coming out of my wife's mouth on the phone ,I also heard them in these other courses , Rolling cows over dead hills!!!! (dont ask, I dont even know what i just said?),But The words and phrases stuck in my brain from rocket last year,,, Then about 3 or 4 months ago I got laid off. Sad but, WOO HOO , I've been going at it 4-8 hours a day "EVERY DAY" "COME ON" no pain no gain , I Now can comprehend 60% of fast daily spoken chinese and hold basic conversations, I talked on the phone with 3 chinese people, they are absolute beginners of english so about 70% of the conversation was in chinese for 20 minutes YEAH!.....I'm only half way there, But I'm Full of courage now , And DILIGENCE IS THE KEY.....NEVER GIVE UP HOPE , In every arena of life. you just need to find the right path and walk it out till the end, Just watch the dought demon crumble under your feet. bye,,,, Popeye.
Lin-Ping

Lin-Ping

Hi Popeye, this is fantastic to hear. Especially the fact that you used Chinese on the phone, which is the hardest as you can't rely on picking up the meaning of something by looking at facial expressions, gestures etc. Well done! You will be please to hear that we have just released Rocket Chinese Premium Plus, which is the sequel to Rocket Chinese Premium. With Rocket Chinese Premium Plus you get another Interactive Audio Course, a new series of Grammar and Culture lessons, Bonus Audio lessons, quizzes AND the writing section has video content, so you can watch Lin how she actually draws the characters step by step. So there is nothing stopping you from understanding the missing 40% as well :) All the best
shanimator

shanimator

Hello, My name is Chris and I just got back from my first trip to China! I studied Chinese in high school for two years and tried to study further in college. However, the university I attended shut down the class after no one else signed up for it! Anyway, I've been working in the film industry as a designer for about 10 yrs and was recently invited to lecture in WuHu and Beijing. It was the absolute best trip ever. As I was on the trip, the Chinese I learned in high school started coming back to me. I spoke a little to my guides on the trip and they were shocked at how well I pronounced what little I remembered. This encouraged me to try and pick up the language again. I should mention my teacher, Mr.Richard Ayres, who I give all the credit to for my first exposure to the Chinese language. I've been invited back to teach for a month and REALLY want to learn as much as I can. From my research Rocket Chinese was the best reviewed course and I have to say I LOVE it. I hope to become fluent some day and look forward to learning from everyone here!
Lin-Ping

Lin-Ping

Hi Chris, that is really great. Isn't it great to see how much you still remember, even if you haven't used it much. That's really good. Keep us updated on your progress. :P
BreakfastSocks

BreakfastSocks

Hello all, My name is Harry, and I'm a fourth year university student in Computer Science from the states. After having too much free time on my hands last semester and spending it talking to people from around the world online, I decided I should do something with my life while not studying. It has been an amazing experience learning through this program and being able to use what I know to speak with Chinese native speakers. If all goes well, I will have a chance to practice what I've learned by volunteering to teach English to underpriveleged children in Yangshuo this summer, fingers crossed! Also, I've heard that there are many opportunities in the mainland for native english speakers in technology related fields such as IT. Can anybody confirm this? Good luck learning everyone.

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