— By Dev Lewis
你好，Hello, welcome to my first blog entry.
My name is Dev Lewis and I am a 20-year old student from Bombay, India. I am currently 2 and half years into an international relations and economics degree from Roger Williams University in Rhode Island, USA. For the next four months, starting the 11th of February, I will be studying in Shanghai’s East China Normal University.
I write in the midst of packing my bags, less than 12 hours away from boarding my flight. I could not be more excited to spend the next four months in one of the most busiest and important cities in the world. In order to properly live in China understanding Mandarin is crucial and I have been hard at work studying for a year and half, at University and here at Inchin Closer. If I do lose my way, I wouldn’t mind doing so somewhere in Shanghai’s vast array of skyscrapers in Pudong district, or the Bund, one of Shanghai’s oldest districts. I do love traditional Chinese food, and look forward to all the culinary adventures that lie ahead. I hope to expand my social and professional networks while living there, because traveling is no fun if you don’t make some friends along the way, as I travel around the Chinese mainland, in order to get a well-rounded perspective of both urban and rural China.
China is the second largest economy in the world, and will play a very important role in the shaping of the world in the coming decades. Therefore it is very important that the world and India understand the country and its people. India and China do not share a very positive relationship; relations continue to be marred by long standing border issues as these two countries look at each other as rivals rather than friends. A conscious effort has to be made to bridge these differences in a peaceful fashion. My background and passion for international relations will push me to learn the Chinese way of thinking, in order to understand the leadership perceptions that drive their foreign and economic policies.
During my time there I will use this platform to write and post photos about my experiences on a weekly basis. I promise to make this blog as interesting as possible, and give you a unique insight into the city, sharing with you some quirky anecdotes as well as some gripping and insightful narratives. I hope that you enjoy reading my posts, comment below and share it among your friends. Most of all I hope this will inspire you to one day take a similar journey of your own into the Middle Kingdom.
Editors note: Dev Lewis will write a weekly column on Inchin Closer. Follow Dev has he navigates his way around China, her people, places and perspectives. Understanding China as a young Indian, keen to see a brighter future between the worlds fastest growing and most dynamic nations.