Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Completely and utterly RANDOM

This post is. Its a total hodge podge of random things. I'm still feeling a little bit like crap, but I went to the doc today and apparently its 一般的感冒!Just a regular old cold! But, ugh.. feel like poo. Hopefully the cough syrup drowsy stuff he gave me will help me sleep tonight!

So, anyway we moved into our place and I thought it was so cool because they had flowers on the table, and a tray of fruit, and fresh orchids in the bathrooms... just little things like that make it feel more like home!

Ok this made me totally happy because its a built-in jewelry box! How sweet is that?!! I didn't bring anything like that and was wondering where I'd put my stuff. Problem solved! yay.

And this? We are on the the 29th floor and this is one of those cool things I've only ever seen in the movies... its an intercom-I-can-see-your-face-buzzer-upper-thingie! Sweet!

And trying to do laundry with a Chinese washer! Sure some are totally easy, especially if I know the characters... but, the one with the hand? That I THINK is for hand-washing? The characters mean WOOL. I think you hand-wash wool... right?! I mean, there IS a hand... washing.. so it should be hand-washing. I hope.

So for this next picture...
A little Chinese cultural tidbit - what number is missing here?

....4! In the U.S. our bad luck number is 13, so we often won't have a floor number 13 or room numbers at hotels with the number 13... in China, the bad luck number is the number 4, because in Chinese it is pronounced "SI" which also is the way the Chinese word for death is pronounced.

And skipping around again.. before I moved to China I ate WHATEVER I wanted because I knew I wouldn't be able to in China and would probably lose weight. Yes. I have lost about 6lbs already! I need to get eating STAT! Its just that I eat so much more delicious veggies here, and less meat for some reason... look at these veggies, they are SO delicious, soaked in garlic... oh yum...

And another word on the food... I ordered a normal wonton soup and my husband ordered a soup with "beef balls" in it. We assumed there would be beef in the wontons.. apparently not. After taking a few bites, my husband said... "Do you think this is actually... beef... BALLS?" And looking at the texture and shape... um, they looked like they COULD be! He kept on eating it (I would not have been able to! LOL), while I googled and found that Asian meatballs are just really different in texture than how we make them in the U.S. - they are sort of bouncy and chewy... lol.

And lastly, my husband went to a market the other day and picked me up some of these pretty bangles... they were dirt cheap but I love them! pretty. They are called Jingtailan and are made with a unique combination of sculpture, painting, porcelain making and copper-smithing that is said to have originated in Beijing during the Yuan Dynasty.

I started language school this week, and I love it, its a great refresher! But funny because we are in the intermediate books and our level is definitely way higher... which is ALSO funny because the school I originally went to focuses so much on higher level stuff (for example, I can listen and understand to dialogues or speeches or tv shows about the economy and the political situation and opinions...) .... but throw us in a restaurant and we are honestly somewhat lost! There are so many different names for dishes, and just other colloquial words and sayings that we don't know... so this school is perfect for learning those everyday things & right now refreshing what we already do know!

Alright, off to take my medicine that will make me drowsy and enable me to hopefully sleep through the entire night, and also let me wake up bright eyed and bushy tailed (yes I just said that) for class tomorrow!



  1. Those bracelets are so beautiful!!! Love them!!! <333

  2. I'm always so intrigued by other countries and cultures (probably because I've done so little international traveling myself, wah!) so this post is great! Hope you feel better soon!

  3. Hope you feel better soon! Too funny about the beef balls!

  4. I lost about 12 pounds during my trip there, I was stoked! I think it was a combination of the food, walking and oh yeah food poisoning. Hope you feel better. My friend that lives over is all about these flowers and herbs that you make into teas to help cure yourself. Feel better!

  5. Hahaha, beef balls, that's so funny! I definitely wouldn't have been able to finish my meal once that thought entered my mind!

  6. I just noticed that all the floors that contain the number 4 (14, 24, 34) are all missing too!

    That's funny that you lose weight in China because I packed on 10 lbs (which was a LOT on me) when I was there because we ate out all the time and always ordered way too much food.

    I totally understand what you mean about language classes. I'm not Chinese but took 3 years of Mandarin in college and by the end I could argue philosophically about women's rights but couldn't do anything actually useful like order half the things in a restaurant.

  7. That has to be hand wash. On our washer it says hand wash/wool. So I'd say you're right!

  8. It's so much fun reading about your experiences!!!!!

  9. OMG Steph, the beef balls made me giggle. What you don't know won't hurt you. LOL. Sometimes direct translation can be tricky especially if it pertains to food. Think of them as Chinese meatballs. Feel better soon.

    Couture and Crayons

  10. This is SO cool I love reading about your adventures in China !!
    Did you know that there is no row 13 on occidental planes ? We all have our weird cultural beliefs ;)

    Thank you so much for the feedback on my blog. I would love to hear more about your friend's Shiba Inu !!

    I hope you feel better sweetie ! Bisous !

  11. Aren't 13 and 14 missing too?

  12. this is sooo cool. i feel like i learned a whole lot of knowledge from this post. hope you feel better! :D


  13. I love your posts! So interesting! Those bracelets are so pretty. Hope you feel better.

  14. Noel, 13 is not there because either/or/both 1. influenced by western culture, or 2. lots of westerners live in this building. They don't do any of the numbers with 4 in it because in Chinese, for example, 4 is "SI" - 2 is "ER" and 24 is "ER shi SI" ... 14 is "YI shi SI" - so any number with 4 in it you still need to say SI.

    distant dreamer - awesome!! Thanks! now I am confident I won't ruin the stuff that needs gentle.

    Amber - I was wondering if you got sick here! I've been really nervous about eating the food because I heard so many people get sick from it! But after the first week of starving I realized I can't NOT eat.

  15. PetiteXXS - funny how that works huh?!!!

  16. I love me some beef balls! Haha, seriously though when I went back to Taiwan a few years ago, I was like "I used to eat this when I was little!?" Half the stuff I wouldn't touch today. But those beef balls are tasty! Heh.

  17. I am seriously so impressed that you can understand written chinese. I cannot even fathom that. Also, don't lose too much weight or you will be sick all of the time! On that note, I have the exact same cold right now...

    xo, Kristin

  18. Jchokie - I think its more of getting used to the texture!

    Kristin - I am definitely trying to eat more!! Its been hard because I am used to snacking ALL the time but when we were living out of the hotel, we had no food on hand and also like the first week I was here I think I only ate dinner once, just because we didn't know where we should go! If I had been eating like normal I probably wouldn't have got sick!! ugh! It sucks!!! I hope we both get better soon!

  19. Lovely read, Steph!:D Feel better!:D

    ...and everything girly under the sun!

  20. I think I may have said this before but your new place looks ridiculously amazing!! and they had flowers for you when you moved in?! just keep getting better :)

    hope you feel better soon, a simple cold can sometimes be the most annoying thing ever!!

    xox Vicky
    Bikinis & Passports

  21. Your apartment is so cute! And your husband is a sweetie!
    Hope you are feeling better

  22. this is so awesome. it looks so amazing! <3333