Sara Jaaksola in China: The reason why I decided to live in China

[Updated 2013.7.7]

Coming to China had been my dream as long as I could remember.

In primary school grade 6 we were asked to make presentations of countries to our notebooks. I chose China because my parents had lived there before I was born and I could add some photos to my work.

When I went to middle school I wanted to study Chinese language but didn’t really have the possibility for that. Instead I just carried my father’s old Berlitz phrasebook with me.

During high school dad bought me a Chinese learning textbook and I practiced with a little girl from the local Chinese restaurant. At that time I also chose my Chinese name 雪芳 Xuefang and one teacher gave me the surname 亚 Ya.

When I finally get in to The University of Tampere I started my Chinese classes. After two beginners classes I switched to summer university in order not to have a break in my studies during summer vacation.

Last Autumn came with big changes and I decided to go to China. The whole February I travelled in China before coming to The University of Guangzhou where I studied for three semesters. In September 2011 I started my bachelor degree in Chinese as a Second Language at Sun Yat-Sen University. I will be graduating in December 2013.

People ask me frequently why I came to China and why I’m so interested about it. My best answer is this. My mother was expecting me when she was still in Beijing so maybe at that time something went wrong and caused this illness that I’m happy to suffer long term.