It is the first non-technical post of this blog,  I decided to write some posts here about my life in China. Let me begin from scratch!!

Why I choose China?

To sum up because of my interest. I graduated from Electrical and Electronics Engineering department and I’ve been interested in space technologies for years so my graduation project was about on “CanSat Design” and me and my friends were a participant team of CanSat Competition’19 in the USA. It was a perfect experience for us and we decided to keep on studying/working in this area.

While I was surfing on the internet, I saw something about a master program on space technologies on TUBITAK UZAY website. I analyzed the course list then realized that it was perfect as I’ve always dreamed and there was a chance to get a scholarship obtained by APSCO. The list and scholarship forced me to apply for the program even I work for a good company with perfect colleagues as perfect as you couldn’t imagine.

Application Progress

You have to apply for the program via the agency determined by APSCO for your country so I sent my documents to TUBITAK UZAY for my application in Turkey.  You can read the details on the website of TUBITAK UZAY if you’d like to get more information.  In the following week, I received emails from TUBITAK UZAY that inform me about the interview schedule of the application. One month intervals, I had an interview with APSCO via Skype and I received the email of acceptance 🙂 My story begins with that email…

Getting the Visa

X1 Visa is required for the students to visit China for the first time, then you need to apply for the residence permit. I made an appointment and had an interview at the Embassy of China in Turkey, it was a good experience also, the interviewer was so kind to me. After the application interview, I got my visa in the following 5 days.

Flight to Beijing and The First Impression

We bought the tickets from Turkish Airlines, from Ankara to Istanbul, then to Beijing.  Normally it takes about 10 hours from Istanbul to Beijing but mine took 8 hours because the plane took off with 4 hours delay and the company tried to eliminate the latency.

(09.09.19) (07.00 pm) When the plane landed, you need to pass the passport control firstly, then you can arrive at the luggage area by mini subway to get your luggage. When I arrived the luggage band, couldn’t see mine and asked AirChina (THY and AirChina work together because of the Star Alliance group) the status of my luggage. They found it in front of the branch office at the airport. To withdraw we found an ATM but I couldn’t be sure to withdraw because of the tax unknown, I tried it with a small amount of money then got some cash money using our Turkish bank cards, I couldn’t recognize any taxes so far. I hope I won’t have any tax.

(09.00 pm) We bought a ticket for the shuttle bus to go to the Beihang University campus, it costs 30 RMB.

Shuttle bus

It took 1 hour to arrive at the campus, everything was so good so far 🙂

The Dormitory 😀 

(10.30 pm) When we arrived at the dormitory, we started to be surprised more and more in every step we took. Firstly, nobody who works in the dormitory could speak English, we had to communicate with them using our gesture ahahah. After showing our documents, they gave us an apart room temporarily to sleep that night finally. However, the apart was the dirtiest place I’ve ever seen, it was really really awful, smelled terrible and seemed horrible.  There were 2 rooms(for 2 people stay in each), 1 kitchen and 1 bath; someone was staying in both of the rooms.

I’m sharing photos of only common places because of privacy.

Kitchen with lots of insects… If you feed the insects enough, I think you can get a friendship with Gregor Samsa hahaha. (I’m so sorry Kafka, forgive me for that joke.)

We tried to change the dormitory totally to another building but we couldn’t because of the lack of available room. However, we finally can find a tidy and clear apart with an empty room. Now I’m staying here.

(10.09.19 – 11.09.19) On the second day of the dormitory, we met someone from Turkey, it was an unpredictable surprise for us, it made me so happy 🙂 During these two days, we tried to complete the registration progress and did it successfully.

The seeing of the main building of our university from outside.

After the registration, we had a meeting that they inform us about the university, campus, and rules. They gave us some guides and forms for the course selection progress.

I don’t remember their names and contents 🙂 By the way, using chopsticks is not as difficult as you thought.

The First Days

(12.09.19) At 12.30, we have an orientation meeting organized by APSCO (Asia Pacific Space Cooperation Organisation) and we joined that, it’s a good introduction to encourage the students to do best their own. They gave us a moon cake for the Mid-Autumn festival, it tastes so sweet but there’re two balls inside and their taste were weird, I could not eat one of them, it’s too salty.

From the green park on our campus.

After come back to the dorm, I decided to tidy my room especially my bed. In our room, there are two bunk beds; one of them is belonging to me. Below the bunk, I had a desk and many shelves but in a bad condition 🙂 I bought some chemicals from the market with my friend Asude who is also a master student here, she helps us.

Cleaning the bunk and shelves only took more than 3 hours for me, then I went outside of the dormitory for fresh air and saw Asude and a few Turkish guys, they are also so friendly people and they advised me lots of things to do.

(13.09.19) Today can be considered as a normal day because I didn’t have anything to do for registration and my duck bed was as clear as I can sleep on that 🙂 So I try to discover markets and canteens in the campus. I found a market and a canteen near my dormitory.

Some interesting products in the market.

However, when I visit the canteen for the first time, I couldn’t stand for the smelling of foods but I got used to that in a few minutes, even everything is ok so far, whenever I visit there, the smell of the canteen is swerved on me :((

One of the first foods I ate in China, there is no chicken on my plate because I ate them already. I can’t remember to take photos before I ate half of my food 😀

We created an account at ICBC(bank), then got our debit cards. They told us you had to wait for the activation SMS, we received a few SMS but in Chinese hahah so when we tried to sync our debit card with WeChat pay, it worked, and we considered our debit card as activated.

I visited WALMART also at night to buy an electricity plug extender for my laptop and my phone charger, however, I still need an AU type cable for my laptop, my laptop requires electricity grounded, but the extender can’t support the ground line for AU plug(TYPE E and F) so I still need a TYPE I cable with 3 pins.  I plan to buy it from Taobao(it’s an app for shopping in China), it’s the cheapest online shopping app here.

(14.09.19) I can’t wake up until 11 am because of the memories of my work life in Turkey, I had to wake up early but now I can sleep as much as I can hahaha. We again cleaned the rest of our room using chemicals to be sure that our room is ok to live in 🙂 but still, we need to organize our clothes and other things into the wardrobe.

Before I sleep, I watched some BluTV for a Turkish TV series called Behzat Ç., I really missed it. I slept too late.

And here are some foods I tried:

I remembered to take the photo before the half of it hasn’t been consumed yet 😀

There were lots of meats on that. I remembered to take a photo after I ate most of it 😀

The taste is the same as I’ve eaten in Turkey.

McDonald’s may be a good alternative for people who can’t eat Chinese foods.

Cycling is so cheap, you can find a bike everywhere, just scan the barcode and get on it. Whenever you want you can leave it anywhere as far as I know.