I cooked Chinese and developed into a fair dinkum Chinese cook.
I kept the major Chinese holidays...but since these basically involve eating dumplings, getting pissed drunk, and blowing things up, unless you saw the decorations on my apartment door it was rather hard to distinguish my actions on these days from those on any other days.
And on a hot summer evening, I enjoyed promenading the neighborhood while wearing my pajamas and clutching a plucked chicken in one hand and a bottle of huang jiu in the other.
The thing is, Western people have this idea of 'eastern culture' of incense, temples, chants, prayers, robes, buddhism, peace and quiet, love of nature.
They come to China thinking it's going to be like that and while there are bits like that, most of it has the bedlam, but not that element of the 'other'.
I told my friend who is in Thailand who could double his money at a Shanghai International School how much he could earn, but said (he had lived in Moscow before) "But the winters in China are so grim - imagine the UK but worse."
He said "Yeah - I can imagine. Like Moscow without the Vodka."
Very perceptive way of putting it...
I know long term people who live in Thailand and they never rant about the place, despite it being poor and annoying they still love it - even the people who really like China still don't quite love it in the same way IMO...
I might be going back if I get the very good job I've got an interview for later, but if it was for bog standard ESL, I might just choose rural Spain or something in the future...