All posts by Yu Zou

Last meeting–Ghost~

This is our last meeting and also the last meet before summer holiday. I decided to tell ghost stories to Johanna to make sure she had a good memories (Maybe not). Ha ha…

I had introduced some traditional ghost and some stories in China. For example: we have different types of ghost based on their death. There are good ghost and bad ghost. There are also many similars with our ghost story and Janpanese, Korean stories. I showed few samples make sure Johanna understand clearly. I also introduced some trsditional festival based on ghost called Ghost Festival. That’s the day in the story many ghost will come out from the hell, so people need to becareful about the ghost. Based on the story, some trditions ahd been created. For example: People are more likely stay inside than outside.

Johanna felt really interested on this topic. I showed also some pictures expalin the different between Chinese zombie and western zombie. This is really funny. From this course I got a nice freind which can teach me somenew things and I could also teach her something. By learning from Johanna, I had learned more about Finland and its other parts.

Vegan food

Johanna had invited me to have a meal at her place, so she could show me some good Finnish style vegan food. I was intrerested because I am a carnivorists and I had tried some bad vegan food. She would like to change my oppions of the vegan food.

I had meal with Johanna and her husband. We had some nice talks during the meal. Johanna had cooked many different types of the vegan food. There were some patatoes with liitle taste which was my favorate vegan type. There were also some vegan food which looks like meat pie, but it made of soybean. The drinks were also soy milk. This milk tasted good, and maybe it could be metter if it was more sweet.

We had a nice meal together, and I also asked her husband how does it feel when you have a vegan wife. He said mainly difficult on finding the food and restaurant:)

Chinese food culture

This type is the continue of last food. Last time is the trying of the food but this time is the knowledge. The lesson had began.

With the computer, I showed a TV show called ‘Bite of China’ which is a very famous food TV show in China. This show introduced different type of food and its stories. I showed in the beginning how people get the materials from. The matsutake can only be found in big forest with good environments. Some people lived based on this. How much and quality of the matsutakes are, how much money they could get. The lotus roots are famous food materials in China but it can only get by hand. There are many people work hard to get enough roots from the soil of pond or river bottom. There is a sentence called ‘People survive based on the environment where they lived’.

Because of the time, I can’t show more to Johanna. So I had taught her how to find the videos with english subtitles so she could watch when she has free time.

Spring in Pyynikki

This time we went to Pyynikki area which is a great place to spend weekends. We were walking inside beautiful forest and talk together. This type Johanna had promise me to introduce the myth of Finnish culture.

This time Johanna had introduced me many different kind of gods, mythical creatures and fairies. For example: elves and fairies had protect humans in the past and some people lived with an evil fairy called para. Para trying to use different animals to steel other people’s stuff. Goblins and gaints are also funny. I knew how people think the church is made mythically. Because of some type of trees, I doesn’t feel that good at that time. I got quiet strong allergy, so we didn’t spend long time in the forest. After enjoying short time sunshine, we keep moving.

We had finally went into Pyynikki tower and having small ice cream there. Even though the trip wasn’t that well, but I learnt many things from the stories.

Having dinner together

This time I prepared to teach one sign of China, food. Food is very important in China. It was difficult in the beginning, because Johanna said that she is a vegan, 100% vegan. And in China, vegan is the same with vegetarians. But when I ask deeper, she told me that she doesn’t eat eggs, fish, cheese, and even milk!

OMG! This is really challenged for me to order the food for her, but finally I made it. Even there are some small misunderstandings, we start our meal.

During the meal, I introduce some different types of food in China. Because China has a large area of territory, the ways of cooking had been separated to many different types. The main types are eight types. I also introduce the way of cooking at the place where I live. Because it’s mainly for the kings, so both the looking and the taste should be good.

We discuss also the main types of food in different place of China. What we used to eat normally and how the farming and what type of plant they grow between Finland and China.

This has been a really nice dinner.

Short meeting

This time was long time after last meeting. I hurt my ankle during playing basketball, so I stay at home having a long-time rest. I got some homework from Johanna, and she asked me to write a diary about my week. I tried my best, but I only write some basic stuff because I have too many words that I don’t know, and Johanna said that It was better that I don’t use the dictionary.

After the teaching, we go together and have lunch together. We eat and talk together about many things, current situation, future plans and something else.

Chinese traditional Festivals

This time, I taught Johanna about the traditional Chinese festivals. I told the information about the festivals as one-year period. I showed the traditional calendar called lunar calendar. The lunar calendar is based on the moon cycle.

The first festival in the very beginning is the Spring Festival. This is the Chinese New Year. In China, we don’t celebrate the New Year from the Gregorian calendar, but we celebrate the New Year from the lunar calendar. Spring Festival is very important for Chinese people. People usually come back home meet family and stay with family together. Family is also very important for Chinese people. This is similar with the Charismas, which people have fun and celebrate with family. We use red color as the color of New Year, and the play fireworks, and enjoy the delicious foods. We also have many traditional celebrations like: lion dance, and dragon dance.

After the Spring Festival, is the Lantern Festival. I introduced two different types of way to make the traditional foods, and the usual thing people do in this festival.

Qing Ming Festival is another festival which is important for Chinese people. In this festival, people are visiting the grave of their families. People will burn some money for the death, and wish to get protect and good luck form them.

Dragon Boat day is a very traditional festival after Qing Ming festival. In this festival, we will road the dragon boat, have competitions and eat delicious rice-dumplings. This festival is coming from a story that a famous poet wanted to save his country, and he tried to give the suggestions to the king. The king against his suggestions and didn’t pay attention to change the country. He wanted the people realize the problems, so he jumped inside a river. He was so famous and was well received by the people. The people didn’t want him die in the river, so they started to road the boat trying to find him, and throw the rice-dumplings into the river to absorb the fish, so the fish won’t eat his body. This ways finally become to the traditions.

The last festival is the New Year’s Eve. This is the time that people stay with their families and enjoy the food and having funs.

Game museum trip

We had been to Vapriiki. We had looked for most of the things inside. We went to Hurriganes exhibition when we went in. Johanna told me some name of instrument and she also brought me to see the history of Tampere. We went to see the rock museum together and we found many beautiful stones. Then we went upstairs to see the natural museum. There is a funny part is to smell the things in the bottle and see what is name of the things. My favorite smell is called ‘Ruusu’ in Finish.

Then we went to the old game museum. We saw many old games and the history of the games. Unfortunately, we cannot play all the game, but we still try plenty of them. There were many people inside the museum, so it was really hard to wait to play the game.

Then we talked about some different policy in China, and what kind of guns does finish people could own. I also explain the changes from one-child policy to two-child policy.IMG-20170303-WA0000IMG-20170303-WA0002

Chinese History and Mythology

The second meeting, we meet at the school library. And this time I am planning to teach Johanna some basic history and mythology, so she can know the background of China.

China is one of the 4 ancient civilizations. The other 3 is Ancient India, Ancient Egypt, and Ancient Babylon. And in the human history, there are also many myths in the world.

For example: Celtic mythology, Sumerian mythology, and Greece mythology. Norron—Nordic Myth is also quiet famous. And we also have long and interesting mythology in our history.

I first told some people effect Chinese history a lot: Three Kings and Five Leaders.

After that we discussed about dragon. Because dragon is famous in the world, but the dragon in China is different than in other western countries. So we started to discuss about this. I told the meaning of the dragons, and I also showed to Johanna one book which has many different types of monsters in the myth.

In the middle, I explained a small part of Yin and Yang which is famous around the world. Depending on this, I also explained how we compared the body and everything with elements.

I also explained about the ancient astronomy. This is actually quiet hard to explain to her, because the different meanings and stars and ancient words. I mainly taught about the animals of the directions and what its shape. I explained Azure Dragon, White Tiger, Black Tortoise, and also one bird which is similar with phoenix, but a bit different. Its quiet hard to say what’s the difference between this bird and phoenix, but I think I managed.

In the end, I explained to her that Yin and Yang are not single and cannot be separated. They are always changing to each other. It’s the basic idea of balance.

Learning Finnish culture

I am Yu Zou from China. This is my first year studying in TAMK. I apply the EOTO because I want to learn something about Finnish culture.

In the first time, Johanna, my teacher, gave me a small test when I came to the Cafe. The small test is about basic finnish imformation. I knew something already, and then she told me more.

For example: I know the president’s name. But I didn’t know much.

I learnt that the war between Finland and Soviet Union starts 1918. Karhu, the bear, is Finland national animal. For hunting, you need to have 2 licenses and also the amount of animals need to depend on the area of the place. I learnt some animals names: hirvi–moose, ilves–lunks, kettu–fox, susi–wolves.

I also learnt some name of the parties. And also how to ask price in the market, how does people like the things, and so on. After this, we dicussed some funny things I face in Finland and also something about food, cultures and studies.

I also know about the place and name of the city on the map.

This is a really interesting meeting. I had many fun.

We will meet next Friday then.

By Zou