One of the great things about being an expatriate worker is that one can experience the different cultures and customs of other people around the world.
I used to work in the Middle East before coming to China and in Saudi Arabia, for the very first time, I learned all about Scottish country dancing - a fact that may seem weird to some, given that I am half Scottish myself.
When I moved to Abu Dhabi and then to Dubai, I also started to learn Salsa dancing and East Coast Swing, among other dances; and so you can imagine my delight when first coming to Beijing when I was taken first to the Beijing branch of the Caledonian Society (where they practise Scottish Country Dancing once a month) and then to a number of Salsa clubs.
One thing that amazed me was how well the Chinese adapt to western dance cultures. In fact the Chinese make great dancers. And this, coupled with the fact that they are all so “polite” and cultured on the dance floor makes it a real pleasure to go dancing in Beijing.
Yet when I speak to some of the people at work, it appears that few if any go dancing at all, saying they are always too busy for such a pleasure.
I think while I am here in Beijing I will have to see about starting China Daily’s very own dance club and show my colleagues what they have been missing out on. I have no doubt they will all be fabulous once they get onto the dance floor!