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Professional life and pollution in Shanghai


Christina Ege in Shanghai

Christina, 26, is originally from Norway but now lives in Shanghai.

What inspired you to make the move to China?

I met my boyfriend while I was traveling in America, and he wanted to move to China for business opportunities. So I guess you can say I moved here for love.

What was your first impression of this city compared to how you feel now?

I’ve been here 2.5 years now, but I actually didn’t like it very much to begin with because it was just too different. Now, there are still things here that I think I will never get used to but Shanghai has definitely grown on me. I kind of think of it as an arranged marriage, but a good one.

Do you see yourself staying here for good?

I will probably not stay in Shanghai forever. I am actually planning on moving to Beijing within a year. I work for idMASK, a high efficiency pollution mask company. We’ve found success in Shanghai but we need to establish an office in Beijing as well, so I’m moving there to start it all up.

Which of your personal or professional ventures in China have been the most satisfying?

Since I started in idMASK, everything has been about work and I love it! I have learned so much and met so many impressive and cool people. So I think working in a startup and seeing that the work I put in is coming back in a good way is what I am most proud of.

Do you have a passion project?

Recently I’ve been working on staying healthy. I joined AFIT a few months ago and have loved the progress I’m making with getting stronger and fitter. I don’t know if it’s cheesy to say but my work also is one of my passions. I love getting to tell people about what we’re doing and educate them on how to make their lives healthier and happier. And of course I have to say that traveling is now in my bloodstream, so getting to know new cities is one of my big passions in life.

What is your favourite place to eat/drink/shop/explore in this city and why?

I really like the feeling and the shops in the French Concession. It’s so different there from other neighbourhoods in Shanghai, and it kinda feels like home.

What is the BEST and WORST thing about Shanghai?

Best thing is the people and how convenient everything is. You can literally order everything on your phone and get it sent to your door.

The worst has to be the spitting and when the metro is so full that you could fall asleep standing up and not fall over.

Do you think our lifestyle is genetic or the way we were brought up?

I think it’s a bit of both. I started traveling when I was 21, and it all happened somewhat randomly. My best friend asked me one day if I wanted to travel with her, and in my head I was thinking “Ok, we’re going for two weeks in Greece.” When she continued with saying we’d travel for two months in Asia, I replied that I needed to check my funds. But two weeks later, we landed in Bangkok and we didn’t look back. I hear all the time “I wish I could do what you do.” But really it’s all about your priorities in life and taking a chance.

Name three things you crave from your homeland that you are currently living without…

  1. My mom’s fishballs

  2. Real bread with different toppings

  3. Quality time with my family

I am a Girl Gone International because…

I fell in love with travelling.

Who do you love most on Twitter/Facebook/Instagram/Blogs?

I can’t really say I follow anyone in particular. It’s mostly just travel sites and bloggers who take nice photos. My favourites would be of nature and other hippie kind of things.

Any links you would like to include or other info?

Idmask on Instagram


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