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article imagePhoto Essay: My apartment in China Special

By Lonna Lisa Williams     Mar 15, 2014 in World
Jilin - For 3.5 years I've been teaching English overseas. First I was in Russia, then Turkey, and now China where my school gave me a fully furnished, comfortable apartment and a sense of home.
In Russia I lived with a Russian family. For six long, cold months I stayed in a bedroom on the eighth floor of a 12-storey apartment building in Samara, near the frozen Volga River. It was crowded with three kids and three adults, yet surprisingly lonely. I took long walks through the snowy landscapes, alone. When my Russian boss wouldn't pay me, I flew across the Black Sea to Turkey and lived for 2.5 years, mostly near Istanbul where I had an old apartment in Kocaeli. With increasing political problems in Turkey and danger to me as a part-time journalist, I took a job in China. My new company provided a free, all-utilities-paid, elegant apartment in the northeast. Wood floors, comfy furniture, modern appliances, and even a roof to walk out onto were some of its amenities.
Since China was having problems with the Turk-like people of its northwest Xinjiang province, my Turkish husband felt pressured to return to Istanbul. My young adult children are in California. Although my spacious apartment seems empty at times, I add homey touches and wait for someone to visit. I'm proud to have earned my People's Republic of China Foreign Expert license and such a nice apartment. When my contract ends in June, I plan to return to California, at least for the summer. I'm trying to find a teaching job in America. If I don't, I may come back to China next September. When you see these photos, you'll understand why such an offer can be tempting.
Looking from the salon  past the living room  toward the bedroom where I can do my photo essays at m...
Looking from the salon, past the living room, toward the bedroom where I can do my photo essays at my computer
Looking from the bedroom toward the salon
Looking from the bedroom toward the salon
My curio cabinet which features photos of my children and other family
My curio cabinet which features photos of my children and other family
A typical Chinese bathroom with washing machine; the shower is against the right wall
A typical Chinese bathroom with washing machine; the shower is against the right wall
The kitchen with a view toward the dining room
The kitchen with a view toward the dining room
My shelves with Chinese vases  books  and the medals I earned by climbing the Great Wall of China  t...
My shelves with Chinese vases, books, and the medals I earned by climbing the Great Wall of China, touring Beijing's Summer Palace, and enduring Tiananmen Square
 Dream of Red Mansions  books with a matching wood screen
"Dream of Red Mansions" books with a matching wood screen
My elegant dining room
My elegant dining room
View from my dining room; you can unlock the metal bars and climb out the window onto the roof
View from my dining room; you can unlock the metal bars and climb out the window onto the roof
More about Jilin city, jilin province, China, Apartment
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