I might love you, if I knew you…
Tonight I took a bike taxi home from sea world (no whales there, just an expat hangout) after my massage. Any time I walk past a bike taxi or they drive past me they ALL feel the need to slap their back seat and yell “HELLO!” So to be fair when the five bike drivers I was walking towards all did the customary slap and yell, I felt obligated to take a ride from the first person who offered. When I swung my leg around the back of his bike and sat on the seat all the other drivers gave out a gleeful cheer as we drove away. I began to put the death grip on my driver’s jacket, as I tend to do on bike taxis when he grabbed my hands and wrapped them around his rather large waist so I could ride like he was my man. I laughed out loud literally and so did he. He then proceeded to speak to me in Chinese. My response was “wo ting bu dong,” which means “I hear you but I don’t understand you.” He laughed as all Chinese do when I respond that way. So he says in English, “I love you!” several times as I laugh hysterically and try not to fall off the back of the bike. Then he says, “English, wo ting bu dong. I love you!!” He was so comical and genuinely happy to be giving me a ride home that I asked for a picture when we arrived at my apartment. He was happy to pose with me and I posed with him for a picture on his phone. We parted ways happily without proposal of marriage or even a date which I hear often follows repeated declarations of love. Oh well no Chinese romance in the cards for me this week…
Cheese, how I love thee…
One of my colleagues posted this picture to Facebook with the caption. “In case you haven’t looked at the cheese section of Walmart recently, the selection has greatly improved!” For real… No lie… And it may seem that I’m poking fun but I’m not, I promise. This is real life in China. Cheese is like gold bullion. I wish I would bring cheese to a gathering in China and leave the left overs. No ma’am! If I and anyone else I know is asked to bring cheese or salad dressing for a communal dinner, best believe we are leaving the house with the few shreds of cheese left in the package and the corner of dressing left in the bottle. Scenarios like, “That’s enough cheese for an omelet” and “I can add a little milk (ranch) or vinegar to that corner and top my salad tomorrow.” True life.
It’s nice to meet you too but can you stop touching me?
Went to get a foot massage a few weeks ago. FYI…The massage parlor automatically becomes more lively when foreigners walk in. All of the extra staff come to the front and motion for you to sit down and get comfy. So I did. Then they all began talking about me, pointing and smiling. Not sure if the talk was good or bad but I smiled anyway. Once my massage was done and I was at the counter paying a woman who has moved from the back of the shop to the front only to watch me get a massage and make commentary has moved extremely close to me. Now she’s in my head! Ok, so I turn around and smile and ask “would you like to touch my hair?” I had my hair in bulky two strand twists at the time. So I grab a twist and stretch it out. To which she and several others in the shop responded by letting out a loud gasp. I am assuming it is at the disbelief in how much longer my hair is than it looks in these twists. Shrinkage is not only a problem for men is all I’m saying. Now she and at least two other men all have a twist in their hands. They are pulling in different directions, smiling and laughing. She just about untwisted one to see what my hair looked like. I stopped her and showed her a picture of my hair untwisted from my phone. I don’t exactly know what she said but it was very clear that she LOVED my hair out and big and didn’t care too much for the twists I was rocking at the moment. Just a few minutes ago my twists where the coolest thing since sliced bread but the pictures of my hair out and wild trumped my current care free hair-do easily. After intensive investigation of my hair by several parlor employees and a few patrons, the woman asked to take a photo with me. Well she pointed to her phone and opened the camera so I assume that is what she asked. She must have taken 10 photos and in every one she is hugging me so tightly that it is hard to breath. She was so happy and it was so funny that I had to capture the moment for myself so I got a few pictures of us in a tight embrace. I was pleased that she didn’t just stare, mouth gaping open like so many other locals in China. I was delighted with her effort to express herself. Believe it or not this is not the first, fifth or even tenth time this has happened to me in China. I like to think it’s because I am just that fabulous.
Below are some of the pictures I showed her from my phone.
I have never been one to get dressed to the nines every day for work or ware a face full of make up on any day but I do put a good deal of effort into what I wear and how I accessorize even when wearing a t-shirt and jeans. Well I am shame to say that when I left the house one night during the Chinese New Year holiday, I clearly left all the fashion forward rules I usually abide by at the house. I just needed to make a quick trip to Walmart so I just threw a jacket on over my pajamas and flip flops over my socks. I know I was wrong and have since repented for my crime against fashion but I just couldn’t get it together that night. When in China… As it turns out, other than my mocha skin and kinky hair I fit right in at Shekou Werma, as the locals call it.
I look forward to sharing many more adventures in the classroom and the streets of China as they unfold. Until then, be blessed.