I'm back in China for 6 weeks. It's such an odd sensation to go back and forth between the two cultures. It's not a bad feeling, just weird. I actually feel very at home in China. It also takes a few days to get my mind back in the language mode. This city has a slightly different accent than where we used to live, so it takes me a few days to get accustomed to the accent.
We have been hotel hopping trying to find one that suits us. Last time we were here we stayed in the same hotel the whole time. It wasn't the most convenient location, but the room itself was the best. It has a small kitchenette and a washing machine, as well as a refrigerator/freezer. This hotel has a tiny refrigerator, but nothing else. We are still trying to figure out the best way to do our laundry. We will try an air B&B next week.
One thing I'm really enjoying here is the food! We eat out all the time, so it's always an interesting experience. Breakfast is a buffet here in the hotel. I love Chinese breakfasts, so that is always my choice. My husband tends to stick to the American eggs and bacon. My breakfast usually consists of: fried rice, two different stir fried vegetable dishes, a small sausage, a few steamed meat buns, some rice porridge with pickled vegetables, hot soy bean milk, some fruit, and some bread pudding. Yes, I will probably gain weight here! For lunch, I go next door to the mall and go downstairs to the food court. One day I ate beef noodle soup. Another day I had chicken curry with rice, vegetables, and mushroom soup. Today I ate dumplings and a cucumber salad. But tonight I had a stomach ache, so that food might have not been very fresh. I won't eat there again. For dinner tonight we went to an excellent restaurant! We had some barbecued pork/chicken with rice and vegetables, an egg and shrimp dish, and a DELICIOUS eggplant dish! It was eggplant stuffed with a rice cake, seasoned with a spicy sweet sauce. I will definitely be going back!
Last night my husband and I took a coworker out grocery shopping. He is an intern from Germany and is having trouble finding food he can eat. He is a picky eater, so coming to China is especially difficult for him. It is very difficult for me to understand, but he doesn't eat vegetables or fruit! How can a person go through life with no vegetables or fruit!!! I just can't comprehend it. After helping him shop, I asked my husband if a young man like that can actually live off of coke, ice cream, and cookies..... No, actually he did buy some meat, noodles, cheese, milk and bread too, so I guess he will survive. He is still young, so maybe he will change his eating habits as he gets older.
The other day we took the subway to go to church. On our way home, as we were almost to the door of our hotel, I heard a big crash! I looked and saw that a young woman driving a scooter had tipped over. I ran over and asked if she needed help. She was clearly shaken and had hurt her leg. I helped hold up the scooter while she gathered her things. The side mirror had broken. She explained that she hadn't seen a small lip where the sidewalk dropped off. My husband thought maybe she was embarrassed that I helped her. I told him I felt she was embarrassed that she had tipped over, but was actually glad that I helped her. It's hard to know how things are viewed in each culture. But I think overall she appreciated my help.
Oh, back to food for a minute. Burger King has tailored it's menu to the Chinese palette. They have a shrimp/rice patty served on a bun with a couple of slices of mango. I'm kind of interested to try it. They also have a very strange looking chicken burger that is served on a black bun with dried pork on top. The pork looks kind of like hair. If I can get it to post, I will insert the picture I took of the advertisement on the subway.
Well, if I can continue to get my VPN to work, I will post again. I can't get on to Facebook, but I can check blogs and watch youtube. Go figure.