What about Todd? Etc.

Below are FAQ about moving to China I am often asked. I thought I would post them in case you were wondering and didn’t ask. Please ask more, this is how I have discovered things I haven’t thought of.

What about Todd?


Todd and I just celebrated our 10th wedding anniversary! Happy anniversary honey, I am moving to Shanghai 🙂 The company is relocating both of us. However, Todd doesn’t have a job in Shanghai. He does have a job here working on the Hawaii resort. He will be traveling  very soon back and forth from Hawaii to Orlando as the resort progresses. Fortunately, it has been announced another venture for the organization in Shanghai, with construction starting as early as November, after the conclusion of the World’s Fair. Hopefully there will be an opportunity for him to join that project  and then he would be over in Shanghai. We have already talked he doesn’t get a job, he needs to perfect his Mom, Estalene’s recipe for apple dumplings and he can open a stand on the street. I think they will be a hit! I am thinking the most it would be I would be there “alone” is 1 year, maybe less if something comes up for him. He already has 2 visits planned this year, not including coming over with me for my 1st week to get settled with the apartment and getting around.

10/28/11- Todd Update: He has relocated to Shanghai! After just over 1 year of living apart he is here!

Jan 2015- Todd Update: He is staying in China and I am relocating back to the USA. You can follow the adventures at Howzit Hi  and hopefully Todd will keep the blog up while in China. Will see if not I will post when I am back later in the year. 

How long will you be gone for?

I have signed a 3 year 4 month contract that starts in September and ends January 31, 2014.  Why not just 3 years? Well, I have found out that even though I will not be living Sept-Dec in the US, Uncle Sam wants his tax money. I will be taxed both here in the US and in China on my salary. If I had just a 3 year contract I would have to pay both countries this year and then in 2013. 3  years 4 months makes it much cleaner. Also, in China, you are paid monthly and if you are there past a certain date, you receive a 13th month payment, like a bonus. I would hate to miss a 13th month!

What about the “girls”?



This question upsets me the most. We are childfree by choice and the loves of my life are my 2 retired greyhounds Zoe & Courtney Love, we call the “girls”. This is no secret, Todd knows it. If the girls were allowed to be in the cabin of the plane with us, I would take them. Courtney would need her own row, put up the arm rest and it is like her sofa at home, no problem. Not to mentioned they are better behaved than most children, in my opinion. The idea of having to put them in cargo on a 17 hour plane ride makes me very sad and I  find it cruel. What if it is cold or hot, what if they get hungry, who is going to talk to them?  Too much! I think it would traumatize the dogs who have already had a tough life in the racing industry. Our ideal situation is to find someone who loves dogs and looking for a place to live for a few years. They could rent out the house at a seriously reduced rate, the dogs will stay in their house (Courtney gets to keep her sofa), we would pay for all dog expenses and I then feel great the dogs and house are taken care of. Know of any interested candidates let us know . The girls could also move to someone’s house and our house would just wait for the market to recover, the power of positive thinking!

The girls have been adopted! As sad as it is that they are no longer with us, we could not have asked for a better home and family.

Where will you live in Shanghai?

For my first 30 days, I will be staying at the Marriott Executive Apartments in Tomorrow Square. I wish I could just stay there but the company housing allowance will not cover me staying there, so I must find an apartment, this is why I am glad Todd is coming over with me initially so we can find one. Initial 1st decision what side of the river do I want to be on? Pu Dong or Pu xi? The corporate office is in Pu Xi. We have an agent helping us find a place (thanks Rick & Brenda) who will show us places when we are over there and help negotiate the terms with the landlord.

Did you have to have any shots?

I am hoping this one is asked for you are all interested in visiting China but the notion of having to get shots creeps you out! Good news, there are no required vaccinations to travel to China according to the Center for Disease Control.  If traveling to rural areas, there are recommended shots but not for the urban areas. I decided to get my vaccinations up to date for you never know, I may decide to venture on the weekend to the rural parts of China… and the company took care of me getting the shots right at Health Services. They are awfully nice there, not that I recommend anyone getting hurt on the job that would require a visit there, but know if you had to go, you would be in good hands. I had 4 shots the other day, 2 in my right arm, and 2 in my left arm(MMR, Tetanus, Polio, Rabies) I am a side sleeper so it wasn’t a good night for sleeping on either side.I also have Typhoid regime to take on, they are pills I just thought my body had too much on shot day so I have yet to start the process, I am still recovering, they are in the refrigerator waiting.  I go back next week for 3 more shots (Hepatitis, Rabies, and Flu). Good news on the flu shot this year, it includes H1N1 in the one shot! Silly to be excited about that, normally I wouldn’t care but after being a pin cushion, one less is one less. Celebrate! I will have to have my final rabies shot in China, that should be an experience in the making. Positive of the whole experience is I will have a shot book after this. I wasn’t able to produce one prior so I am sure that is another reason why they suggested getting these shots, I couldn’t prove it. Thanks Mom, where is my book? When I asked her last week her about a shot book, she said she would call Dr. Buchanan. Dr. Buchanan, was wonderful growing up, but he was also from my memory, pretty experienced (nice way of saying old) and as I myself am getting experienced, there is a good chance Dr. B is no longer practicing, I would think. I didn’t mean to call Dr. Buchanan, she said but his office.  Really, you think he still has an office? I appreciate her helpfulness, if she wanted to be helpful she should have kept my shot book! To have them find paper records from over 15 years ago, I imagine that would take months.  No problem, I was a big girl, go my shots but disappointed there were not Hello Kitty bandages, instead they were the beige, never to come off hospital industrial ones, they need better bandages.

What about a job after Shanghai?

After my contract is up (3 year 4 months) it will depend, if there are additional opportunities for me, if I want to sign on again, etc., time will tell. I am not guaranteed a job back in FL when I return. I will be calling around all of you! 🙂

2015 Update: After 4 years and 4  months I am leaving China heading back to the USA. You can follow my adventures repatriating back at Howzit HI 

What about TV and Facebook?

For those who know me, I love TV. It is my escape and there are some shows like Glee, that just make me happy. I also like Vampire Diaries, Big Love, Big Bang Theory, Psych, Dexter, the list goes on…You may have heard about Internet censorship or the Great Firewall of China (giggle).  Facebook, Google, Twitter, and many Internet sites are blocked. No Hulu, ABC.Com, etc., that list goes.  China also only allows 20 foreign films to run in China each year. This is not the case in Hong Kong due to HK being a special entity, of course it is. Early on in the decision process, I told Todd I can’t do this without my shows. There are benefits to being married to a nerd geek and he has assured me that the police will not come and take me away. That is going to be a long plane ride over to come and get me. If he is right,  I will be enjoying the fall line up (gosh I am excited about Hawaii Five-O!), Facebooking what’s on my mind about the shows, and keeping up the blog.


8 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Leora
    Aug 24, 2010 @ 22:09:09

    Becca, I’m very happy for you. We will miss you but I know how you like travel and adventure. Have the time of your life! Leora


  2. Carol Melo
    Sep 18, 2010 @ 16:45:13

    I am so glad you are going for this opportunity!!!!! And that you have a supportive partner. Life is good.

    Wishing you the best.


  3. Jeffito
    Sep 23, 2010 @ 06:26:36

    Rebecca, great blog. I look forward to following your adventure! Who knows, maybe I will get a chance to work there too? Good Luck!


  4. Gary Schwack
    Oct 09, 2010 @ 10:07:25

    Good Evening or Morning Rebecca,

    We leave for the Grand Canyon on Sunday, 10/10/10. WE are very excited and we have to thank you and Todd for all of your help. We will be taking lots of pictures and posting them for you to see.

    How is the new job working out? I hope that you are loving it. Your apartment looks so cute, very Ikea, I like it.

    I enjoy your blog, it is almost like we are right there with you.

    Talk to you soon.



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