Friday, August 17, 2007

miscellany

1.  Last night (Thursday) XC and I were talking while having a late dinner after some interviews.   She knows the people we have been around are all believers and they have all been genuinely very nice.  XC mentioned that she noticed that I was more relaxed, and had no tension while in Chengdu.  She said something to the effect that I must feel in Chengdu like she did in Fuzhou when she was back home with all her family.

 

I think she gets it.

 

2.  Everyone here has continually commented certain CFC people who lived in Chengdu this past year.   They had a very real impact on people and really helped the Chinese.  This is genuine admiration and not just Asian politeness.

 

3.  If you can read this, or could possibly read this, I am not bringing you any gifts from China.  Sorry, but I did not come here to shop and I have had work to do.

 

4.  Chinese yell at each other a lot.

 

5.  I love "tapioca milk tea" with "frog eggs" (i.e., little purple, gummy rice balls) on the bottom.  My students joke that I am addicted to it.  It is hard to describe this drink in a meaningful way.  So I won't.

 

6.  At a large, upscale shopping district in Shenzhen I found an "all for 2 yuan" store (2 yuan = 27 cents).

 

7.  Asian Big Macs are good and quite different.  The meat is highly peppered and they replace lettuce with cabbage.  It is quite appropriate to eat one in taxi while rushing to the airport.

 

8.  Lay's potato chips come in the "classic American" style as well as other flavors such as beef, chicken, and my personal favorite, cucumber.

 

9.  Saw DVD's in Shanghai for sale for 16 yuan ($2.14) with plastic case or 7 yuan ($0.93) in a cardboard sleeve.   Titles included Die Hard IV, the latest Harry Potter, Spiderman 3, Transformers.   Some of these films are not even in theaters here.   I wanted to buy a bunch but came under conviction.

 

10.  When I ordered a "green tea frappacino" in a Shenzhen Starbucks, the clerk was very impressed and pleased that a foreigner would want a local favorite.   I must have scored points because later she gave me some free samples of other drinks to try.
 
11.  I just put XC in a taxi for the airport (fey gee chang).  I leave early tomorrow for Shanghai in order to take the world's longest 45-minute flight to Chicago.  I leave a little after 4 p.m. and arrive before 5 p.m.

 

Be blessed!

RB

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