Sunday, September 19, 2010


I am sick with the nasty Shanghai flu. I am currently in bed with my computer which I didn't know had a VPN account on it so now I can use it to access our blog. (Joey just told me!) Yeah, now I can blog in my bedroom where it is quiet instead of in the front room where the main computer and TV are both located. No one got Joey's nasty cold, but now I have introduced some nasty bug into our 16th floor flu bug; haven't slept for three days straight in a long time. Crazy way to lose weight; I just may try a bathing suit on tomorrow, I feel so skinny.

I've been asking around about the long pinky fingernail and the long thumb nail. The answer that I have gotten for the explanation for the long pinky nail is that the men use it to pick the ears. I have not found out the reason for the long thumb, to pick the nose? I didn't even think to Google it - Down in the comments Gwen says she found out it was a way of showing others that you don't have a manual labor job, that makes sense. I'll keep asking around.

On Friday, I was particularly cranky at work. My poor students could do no right and I was uptight. Come to find out I had a 100 degree fever and was starting to get the flu. As I was walking home from work by myself (Doug was at a technology conference in Pudong) at 5 PM, feeling so lousy, so tired I didn't know if I would make it home without fainting or having to sit on the urine filled sidewalk to rest, I started thinking all kinds of nasty negative thoughts about everyone I saw and everything I smelled. Tears were starting to well up in my eyes as I prayed that I would just make it home to a husband with a waiting hug, when God said to me, "Walk through the park." "No, I know I usually walk through the park, but I'm so sick and tired - it will take a whole minute longer, I don't want to today." He said, "Do it, you'll be glad you did." "No, really I don't want to today. I feel so sick." "Go," He said. "Oh, all right - I'll go, but this better be good because I'm at the end of my rope." "You'll be glad you did. You will see something that will make you smile." (Editor's Note: There was only one thing that was going to make me smile at that moment, besides a big soft bed and a cold gatorade...someone had left a little kids bike in our apartment when we moved in. It had been sitting on our patio for weeks and finally a couple days ago we carried it to the park across the street from our apartment (where the ladies dance) and placed it in the middle of the park in hopes that someone would take it and use it. IF I saw a little kid riding the bike that we dropped off - YES, that would have made me smile and it would have been worth the walk through the park when I felt so terrible. BUT NO! That did not happen! Read on....) So, I turn into the park and start looking around at the small children and their grandparents playing with them, not too many kids in the park, too early for the ladies to dance, not much going on..."Keep looking," He said. "I am, I am..." As I was nearing the end of the walkway of the park kind of happy that I had proved God wrong and had "won" our little battle of wills... I saw it.
I saw what he wanted me to see and I never would have if I hadn't walked through the park. It was a grandmother lovingly holding her granddaughter over a hole in the ground so she could poop. She had removed a green cover to a small "man hole" which revealed a pipe directly to the sewer. This is a toilet hole that one can use when needing to relieve oneself. I looked around and saw more green "man hole" covers in various places in the park. No outhouses or public restrooms, but just pipes that lead directly to the sewer for your convenience. No wonder people sleep in the park! No need to go anywhere else. No wonder so many kids playing there for hours. I can't believe that I hadn't seen it before. One would need to be careful, a small child could fall directly into the sewer. No wonder grandparents are so carefully watching their grand babies...always within arms reach. "See, " said God, "funny, huh?" "Yes, you were right...again." :)

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