2016-04-10

First day in China


We are off traveling again, and I haven't had much time to blog. I did a bit of writing while we were traveling through China. I cleaned it up a bit, and figured I could share some.
October 3, 2015

Waking up, we looked down on Beijing in the morning light. We couldn't wait to explore … at six in the morning. Yay jet lag! We got down onto the street all chipper, walking around saying hello to everyone we saw. We were not sure why people weren't saying hello back. I blame the jet lag, but eventually we realized six a.m. is a bit early on this side of the globe also.

We found a dirty, well trafficked hole in the wall breakfast place, where the cooking was taking place on the sidewalk. My wife started ripping into our order before I could even tell her what I wanted. So when the waiter went away I informed her in my serious voice, "From hence forth, at each transaction I either get to do the ordering or the paying."

She laughed at my seriousness, but agreed. After we finished eating I had my first Chinese conversation in Beijing.

多少錢? ( How much? )
十二塊 ( Twelve dollars. )
不好意思,我們剛到了. ( "I'm sorry, we just arrived," as I handed him $100.)

After Lunch, we continued to explore our new neighborhood, and we came across a hair salon. I forget exactly how much they were charging but it was cheap, really cheap. Our stylist looked to be in her early fifties, and like most of these type places lived above her shop.

I saddled up, and the wife took a seat a few feet away. As we got started, she began chatting with my wife. Their conversation centered around me. The hair lady asked questions like, "Where is he from?", "How old is?", and "Are you his translator?" Upon finding out that my wife was, well, my wife. She had a whole new line of questions, like "Do you have any kids?", "Were you always this fat?", "Does he make a lot of money?", and "Does he own a house?" To a westerner these are invasive, and rude, but they are typical to a Chinese person. Also, to clarify my wife isn't fat by our standards. She isn't the super skinny girl that Chinese consider normal sized either.

Near the end, this kind, caring stylist imparts some important advice to my wife. She takes a moment to walk over to my wife, and whisper to her. "You need to hurry up and get pregnant. That way if he leaves you, you will still have something. Also, be careful, other women in China will snatch him up!" Again, as an American I consider this weird paranoid thinking, but listening to other Beijingers this thinking seems to be the norm. Our friend that picked us up from the airport, said something similar to my wife "Watch other girls around him, they may try to pounce."