Zsuzsanna is a 20-year-old Hungarian Au Pair who lives in Wuxi. She takes care of Vicki, a cute little 9-year-old girl. She is going to tell us about her life in China.
Au Pair Shanghai – Why did you decide to participate to the Au Pair in Shanghai program and become an Au pair?
Zsuzsanna – Last year I decided to attend a Chinese class at university but found out that it was very hard. When I failed the exam I looked for a better way to learn the language. I always wanted to live abroad and because I have 8 brothers and sisters and babysitter experiences I thought that the Au pair job would fit perfectly. I looked on the Internet and found a partner of Au Pair in Shanghai who put me in contact with them.
Au Pair Shanghai – How was your integration inside the family?
Zsuzsanna – To be honest the first two weeks were really challenging. It was the first time I’d be this long away from my family. I felt exhausted because of the jet lag and I had to adjust to a new culture. Vicky was shy and, as I she did not know me, very suspicious. Two weeks later things were much better, she even wanted to sleep in my bed. I just needed to be patient. She’s such an amazing child !
Au Pair Shanghai – Could you describe a typical day for you?
Zsuzsanna – Usually my host mother takes care of Vicky in the morning and the bus picks her up by 8 AM. I use this free-time to go to my everyday running practice, watch some TV shows and learn how to cook Chinese food with my host mother. When Vicky comes back home, she has Chinese and mathematics lessons and then I teach her English. We play and have a lot of fun during this teaching time.
Au Pair Shanghai – Did you make any friends since you arrived?
Zsuzsanna – Yes! People are really nice here. One day as I was taking a walk, this girl came to me and asked for a selfie. We shared our contact details and met again for dinner. We were at the restaurant and next to our table there was these 2 guys who asked me where I was from. They happened to be Hungarian too and the four of us are still friends!
I also have a running team who I practice and do competitions with. Running with this team makes me feel ready for the day and it’s a good way to meet new people.
Au Pair Shanghai – What are your plans for the future?
Zsuzsanna – It’s been 3 months, I have 3 more to go and I would love to visit other cities. I’ll probably go back home, carry on with school and, why not, come back in Wuxi to finish my studies.
Au Pair Shanghai – A few words to the young girls like you, who might be interested in being an Au pair in China?
Zsuzsanna – Do-not-hesitate! It’s a really good experience. You get to know a different culture and meet a lot of new people. A piece of advice: learn some basic words in Chinese, it might be useful when you arrive until you get your official Chinese lessons. I feel blessed to be here. It feels like a new challenge every single day!
Thank you, Zsuzsanna, for taking the time to answer our questions and share your adventure with us. We wish you the best !