Mike: July 2005 Archives

Let There be Internet!

| | Comments (1)

Hey everyone, to go along with my brand new room, I also got a new laptop computer! It works great and my internet is now fully functional in my *single* =D

Short update, but a very important one! Anyways... I'm off to go download Instant Messenger =P

Trip to the Forbidden City

| | Comments (6)

The Forbidden City is where the emperor used to live up until 1911 when the Qin dynasty fell (if I remember correctly). The palace is huge, as it was meant to be able to fit most of the city inside its walls. My roomate and I went together yesterday, and despite the rain, the place was still packed. Outside of the Forbidden City is the Tiananmen gate, which is located across from Tiananmen square. A huge picture of Mao Ze Dong looms over the gate along with the ever present red flags. Unfortunately, most of the palace is under construction (most likely for the 2008 Olympic Games). But, what we did see was pretty amazing. The only problem is that most of the antiques were taken to Taiwan when the nationalist party fled, claiming that they were removing the antiques to protect them. So, most of the palace is huge empty rooms with maybe one or two chairs, or a large water pot. Anyways, as usual, while leaving the palace I had a group of asian men want to take a picture with me. Seriously... ooo red hair... what a joke =P I was thinking that when I got back to America I should run up to random asian people and ask them in my poor chinese if they'd take a picture with me.

I took a ton of pictures of the place but don't have a way to upload them to a computer here soooo... sorry to make you wait mom but it'll be another month hah.

Shopping and Bargaining

| | Comments (3)

Yesterday I went on a really fun adventure with my language partner to an outlet mall on the East side of China. The place was PACKED with people and fake clothing. In my Chinese 101 class at UVA the first thing we had learned how to say was: "give me a discount" which is probably the most useful Chinese phrase. The merchant will quote you a price, say... 160 kuai (still only 20 bucks) for a fake polo shirt. In response, the buyer might offer 35 (around 4 bucks). On average I paid 50 kuai each for the 3 polo shirts I ended up buying. I would stand there dumbfounded as my language partner explained to the seller how awful the stitching was, and then we would coordinate fake "walk aways" as we tried to give the seller the impression that we didn't want to buy the shirt anymore. Once or twice I amazed the vendors with my brilliant Chinese (yeah right) and said "gei wo pianyi yidianr" or literally "give me a little cheap". All in all it was a really fun day.

China's Air Quality

| | Comments (3)

... is really really bad. I've had two friends now have severe asthma (spelling) attacks due to running outside. A few weeks ago when I went to visit the Summer Palace on a really humid day I started to feel like I had asthma too. Apparently it's gotten better in recent years (hard to believe) but people have told me that while the polution in bigger cities is getting better is because they're moving factories to the countryside. Makes me wonder what the Olympics is gonna do to worsen/better the environment...

Cheap Movies Abound!

| | Comments (2)

One thing I really love about China is how fully they have embraced to concept of the "bootlegged DVD". For about 1 dollar American I can get any DVD I want, solong as I don't mind watching it in Cantonese with Russian subtitles. Brand new movies that are still in US Theatres come neatly packaged, with poorly spelled commentaries and irrelevent quotations. The box I received "The Last Samurai" in claimed that the movie was starring Billy Crystal, and according to the review, was poorly cast. Way to make the hard sale, China! I am of course slightly exaggerating, I have bought quite a few very functional DVDs, but the really poorly bootlegged ones are by far the funniest. I knew I was in trouble when a Cartoon DVD claimed to have 15 different language subtitle options on the box. When I popped in the DVD the Mandarin sound track was fine, but the English subtitles were from an old John Wayne movie... good thing I can understand some of the Chinese ^^

Anyways... if I get a new room I'm thinking about trying to buy a cheap laptop computer. All of the rooms have internet service (well, not my current one... but it doesn't have a chair either) and I have sorta always wanted a laptop to carry around with me at college. Might aswell get it here since I WAY overbudgeted for this trip. I've been here for 3 and a half weeks and have barely spent 300 American, while I budgeted 2k O_O SO, share your thoughts on me buying a laptop computer to mess around with in China and bring back for college.

Later from China :)

For about four days now I have had a seriously awful case of stomach flu. I believe I got it at a "hot pot" restaurant, but everything I eat seems to cause the feeling to come back. It took most of my strength to walk down the stairs to the internet lab to post this. Unfortunately, my horrible fits of vomiting have caused me to miss the trip to the Great Wall, which included 2 2 hour bus trips and a long walk along the Wall. Supposedly everyone gets really sick once or twice in China, but this is the worst since it has lasted so long. During class on Friday I had to rush out of the room three times to use the bathroom >_< and I left the Friday night trip to the Beijing Opera early with a miserable stomach ache after not being able to hold down lunch.

Anyways, hopefully I will be able to make up some of the sightseeing I've missed because of illness in our week off. I know mom is intent on seeing pictures of me in all kinds of random Chinese places. So far the only place I've taken pictures is a gorgeous palace called "Summer Palace" where the emperor used to come to spend his summers. I suppose a lot has changed since then, the polution is now so bad on some days that walking around the Summer Palace made me think I had chronic asthma.

Anyways, "chi huai" is how you say "to get food poisoning" in Chinese, I think it literally means "eat bad/spoiled".

Back to the room for a nap...

July 2012

Sun Mon Tue Wed Thu Fri Sat
1 2 3 4 5 6 7
8 9 10 11 12 13 14
15 16 17 18 19 20 21
22 23 24 25 26 27 28
29 30 31        


Powered by Movable Type 4.12