Friday, December 29, 2006


Ni Hao from China!

My blogging aspirations from China have been temporarily delayed due to the earthquake in Taiwan (see CNN). I hope we'll be back online soon. In the meantime, I'm limited to email. (Thank you, Niels, for posting this on my behalf).

I remember how as a child how my mom, in an effort to get me to finish my meal, would tell me about children in China. It's mind-blowing to believe that I am actually here, nearly 7,000 miles from home! Melva and I are so fortunate to be able to experience this amazing country through the eyes of those who live here. In many ways, the lack of connectivity to the outside world is enhancing our experience. We have no TV to distract us, no international calling ability, our cell phones don't work here, we can't read the newspaper and can't access any websites outside mainland China. Outside of our first 24 hours in Beijing visiting T Square and the Forbidden City (in which one could spend days and not see everything), we have simply been absorbing every day life.

The character for happiness is ubiquitous here, and in that spirit (along with the sketchy duration of my internet connection), I offer...

as defined by Jen and Melva on their Chinese adventure
  1. upgrades to business class!!!
  2. safe arrivals
  3. seeing our friends at the airport with Santa hats
  4. safe travel in taxis
  5. Beijing beds--so comfortable!
  6. western toilets!!!
  7. fresh mandarin oranges
  8. sweet Chinese bread
  9. Starbucks in T square
  10. Imperial Garden in T square
  11. bookstore in T square
  12. translated English signs in T square
  13. beauty of Chinese language
  14. Hall of Mental Cultivation in T square
  15. Hall of Literacy Brilliance in T square
  16. cypresses with entwined branches
  17. long underwear
  18. Chinese food in China: current favorites--corn and pine nuts, garlic broccoli, chicken with Ancient Chinese Secret sauce, fried cucumber, all the tea in China
  19. escalators and elevators--no ADA here (#19)
  20. not living on the 10th floor--our friends are on the 6th, see #19
  21. kennedy kiddos
  22. new chinese friends
  23. legend of the candy cane (#23)
  24. telling new friends about #23
  25. ribs so tender the meat falls off
  26. Chinese candy
  27. Banana popcorn
  28. Peach popcorn
  29. fresh fruit from street vendors
  30. cooking with "Wendy"
  31. hot water
  32. house slippers
  33. illustrated books
  34. translators
  35. any internet access!
  36. sharing this experience with Melva
  37. thoughts of returning for my next visit
  38. guest apartments
  39. local tour guides
  40. Good Friend Stores
  41. successful shopping
  42. Chinese currency exchange rates
  43. Chinese generosity
  44. Chinese respect for authors
  45. conversations leading from my book
  46. conversations leading to Dad's book
  47. English club
  48. joy of giving
  49. a boyfriend who posts news about Chinese trip from the Netherlands on an American blog read by family and friends around the world
  50. Seeing Dad at work

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