Across China: Transnational couples enjoy life in China's Ningxia
YINCHUAN, Sept. 15 (Xinhua) -- The Mid-Autumn Festival, marked by family reunions in China, has just passed, but memories of the season linger for transnational couple Kim Ji-yeon and her husband Li Hongqiang.
Kim, 34, moved to live in Yinchuan, the capital of northwest China's Ningxia Hui Autonomous Region, after getting married in 2019.
The two first met during the Mid-Autumn Festival in 2018 in Zhengzhou, the capital of central China's Henan Province, and fell in love with each other at first sight.
"This Mid-Autumn Festival has witnessed a bigger family," said Kim, a mother of two, with a baby girl born in June this year.
Kim, from Daegu in the Republic of Korea (ROK), studied Chinese at Yeungjin University in Daegu and had been an exchange student in Qingdao, east China's Shandong Province. Her husband, a plastic surgeon, previously joined exchange programs in the ROK, so language is not a barrier to their love.
"She speaks Chinese well, and sometimes I almost forget she is a foreigner," Li said.
For Kim, support and care from her husband and in-laws give her a sense of home, but due to disruptions caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, going back to the ROK is not as easy as before.
"I talk with my parents through video chat every day and my in-laws also help me take care of the kids. Surrounded by love and happiness, I don't feel lonely though not being able to go back," said Kim.
This year marks the 30th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between China and the ROK, with bilateral economic and trade cooperation reaping fruitful results.
Meanwhile, in recent years, China and the ROK have also witnessed enhanced cultural and people-to-people exchanges, with transnational marriages a vivid illustration of the friendly exchanges between the peoples of the two countries.
Just like Kim, Shin Yong-jin, from ROK's South Chungcheong, also harvests a happy transnational marriage in China, with a beautiful Ningxia wife and two daughters.
Meeting his wife in a bar, taking her to a fireworks show at the Great Wall, and making a proposal at the airport -- As a bartender, Shin's love story with his wife Wei Niu is more like a love drama.
With their elder daughter Lisa born in 2013, the couple decided to open a cafe named after their baby girl, to celebrate their transnational love story.
"My country has a strong coffee culture and I want it to be well integrated with northwest China's food culture," Shin said.
"We wish our customers to be as lucky as us to find loved ones and have a happy family," Shin noted, adding that they had opened four cafes in Yinchuan and that over 10,000 customers had joined their membership program.
"I love the flavor and environment, and I used to eat here with my pregnant wife," said a customer named Jin Jun. "Since my baby was born, the three of us always come here together."
"Our cafe is a product of China-ROK friendship, and I wish there will be stronger friendship and more cooperation between the two countries," said Shin.