Sunday, November 14, 2010
Someone told me...
You're going to see things in China that you're never going to see again! I think this means whether you're in China, or not. It always brings up the thought that Anne and I are always trying to live by; always observe with fascination, not judgment. We're walking home yesterday, and on the outside wall of one of the 25 or so neighboring restaurants (by neighboring I mean within a 3 block distance), we notice the full flap of skin from the head of a decent sized pig drying from a string. Next to it is some sausages neatly firming up for....what they do with it...We determined that it must be a symbol of fresh, flavorful pork. I'm not certain how much flavor can be drawn from skin. It may be something like Vietnamese Pho (pronounced Fa to all you American blokes) where they drain simmering flavors 3-4 times before getting to the non-fatty flavors of the meat/pork--....not sure which...but then you have to do something with the fabulously white and red sausages. It's all very confusing. We've propositioned our school secretary, that escorted us to the customs department to get our working Visas after we lied about where we lived for 6 weeks as a part of the Chinese way, to take us on a walk for an afternoon-yes, even now-to let us buy her lunch and ask any questions we want, to clear up what in the haaiiiilllll is going on!!!
Anne and I were in 7th Heaven yesterday; shorts, t-shirts, sun, 75 degrees, Nov. 13th, Starbucks Xmas cups, trimmed trees in the window, workers donning their yuletide gear, Chinese walking around in wool/cashmere body armor, UGGs, scarves, black suits, and all the while, Bing Crosby singing Christmas tunes in the background for Starbucks; only to be outdone by the 3 wheeled boombox blasting Alicia Keys.
I'm buying Ferrigamo-sp?- dress shoes this week for $30. I hope they become more flexible than when I first tried them on...never have..of course. Anyone??? Are they tough to break in? Or am I buying Ferrari's for Bimbo's? Oh well, I'll only wear them at the formal Xmas party, or something more somber...
So I open up a magazine the school sends to us once every couple of months-Shanghai "that's"--the French issue...whatever. It has a featured section on slangs with the younger crowd. Some of the terms were even in my translation app: Ku means cool, Tamade means damn, Chedan means to talk nonsense, or to bullshit (these are the printed words), and Niubi means #$#@^ Awesome...apparently. You may infer the printed word. It says you don't get taught these words in Mandarin classes. Joey and Hailey have acquired many words they don't teach them in the prepatory IB classes. Heck, they know Slovakian, Swedish, Korean, Thai, Kiwi, let alone the more formalized Chinese! Ahhh, the International experience Ü
Many of you may know that I am a bit of a sports fanatic. ESPN was prerecorded on DVR on a nightly basis. Thankfully, SportsCenter is still a part of my existence 5-6 times/week. Unfortunately, America's passion for "football", the NCAA, and the NBA is not nearly so appreciated by the 5'6" at heart. I'm dying here...................LeBron is a side note, the UW is local fish I think, and the NFL is sooooooo far behind PGA and badmitten. I watched it once, on purpose...better than switching the channel to the PBA-yes, bowling. Where is the Boomer when you need him????? ESPN here is inundated with Barclay's Premiere Soccer League, Motocross, Nascar, F 1 series, and Motorcycle racing. Really??? That is what rings people's bells? Beer is cheap, but please!!!! How many times can your head watch motors on the bus go round and round?? OMG, if I see the word Arsenal one more time, I'm gonna need some crumpets!
Anne got mixed up in some dancing class that put her in a vaudeville performance-"Vinter Vonderland"--can't wait! Hailey is nursing a strained ankle ligament while playing soccer, maybe some floor hockey or practice team for the varsity hoop team...you can't teach 5'9" in China. Joey just finished being Hamlet, and between performances played left field and made a spectacular stretch play at first, while also getting a base hit playing in Nike sweats with the high school baseball team. Apparently Anne's family has some genes that transferred some hand/eye coordination...Lord! He never swung the bat when he played at 8 years old, which is the last time he played! He decided to turn out for the badmitten team. Pretty popular stuff here in Asia. Me, I'm teaching 4th and 5th graders hoop skills Saturday mornings-they're a good year or two behind the same age level in the states. Lots of young kids. I have kids that just turned 8 in 4th grade--do the math, she'll graduate when she's 16.
The picture is of Izzy (girl), and Beans (boy). Very cute little kitters.