Never too old to learn: Chinese man decided to start studying English at age of 93

Pensioner tests out language skills with foreigners in downtown Shanghai

PUBLISHED : Thursday, 10 May, 2018, 3:03pm
UPDATED : Thursday, 10 May, 2018, 3:03pm

An elderly Chinese man who decided to teach himself English has been filmed testing out his new-found language skills on the streets of Shanghai.

The 93-year-old man was seen speaking semi-fluent English with foreigners in Jingan Park in downtown Shanghai on Tuesday, according to a clip posted on Pear Video.

The man, whose name was not disclosed, said he had been studying English on his own after receiving encouragement from his family.

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“Sometimes I say, I’m too old to learn. But my grandson says, anybody, whether 20 or 80, [who] stops learning is old,” the man said. He added confidently: “Keeps learning stays young.”

The man could only walk very slowly with the help of a walking stick, but his eyes were filled with energy and enthusiasm as he approached people in the park.

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He pointed at two women sitting on bench and said: “I asked them where they come from, and they said ‘from Russia’.”

The man also said he had learned some Russian in his younger days and had been able to use this when talking to the women.

The man gave one piece of advice in Mandarin: “Don’t be shy when you come across foreigners. Just speak, and it doesn’t matter even if you make mistakes.”