Confusing the locals can be fun ^__^

Zhuhai Travel Blog

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I had lunch with Michelle (my flatmate), Linda (Swedish English teacher) and her boyfriend at Dumpling King today (the place's full name is something like Beifan King of all Dumplings, but we just call it Dumpling King). Actually, I wouldn't call it 'Lunch', I'd call it a mini-FEAST. We had sweet and sour fish (full fish that is covered in sweet and sour sauce, they've also somehow managed to dice the fish so it sticks out like a Mango after it's been cut), scallion pancake, sweet and sour pork, some sort of eggplant, potatoe, and red and green capsicum dish (sooooo good), spicy cold vegetables (sooo good, but rather spicy. We've learnt to NOT eat the little red chillies in it or we regret it the next morning) and fried bannana in some sort of toffee coating. It was such a good lunch!

I had a relatively good class today. I played musical chairs and yes, I can pass that off as educational as long as I class it as "Number Review" and count down how many chairs and students are left every time. The first little boy to get out started bawling like you wouldn't believe. I discovered how to make him happy though: Made him Chair Monitor (he had to take away a chair every time the music stopped). It was sooooo cute watching him evict people from the chair that he wanted to take away. Then when one of the boys decided that he didn't want to play anymore little Joe dove in and took his place. I've never seen a kid MOVE that fast before.... well, I have, but usually there's chocolate or some sort of sugar incentive involved.

Got back home after class and decided to go and try out the new coffee shop behind Jusco. It's called Caffe Frappessa. Oh. My. God! It's got this amazing, cozy atmosphere, and we (I dragged Michelle with me for company) ran into the owner. Said owner speaks amazingly good English and his staff speak a little English too. The menu is in English FIRST then Chinese (as opposed to Chinese first and then really bad English). The coffee was absolutely amazing and I almost forgot that I was sitting in China, I could've sworn I was sitting in some little coffee shop somewhere in Australia enjoying a Mocca. Prices aren't too bad either. Plus they have ICE-CREAM (as in honest to god ice-cream, not the crap that McDonalds calls ice-cream), fruit smoothies, the nicest looking cakes, HOT DOGS, GARLIC BREAD, and SPAGHETTI!!!!! And the Spaghetti's only about Y20, that's pretty good for a western dish!!! I can see myself spending my weekends after classes in there unwinding with a drink and a snack, it's just got that sort of atmosphere to it that relaxes you the minute you walk in.

Dinner tonight was some noodles from Jusco and some sushi from their cold food bar at the back of the supermarket section. It's not as nice as the sushi from the Sushi train upstairs, but it's not as expensive.

Amazingly enough I've gone from someone who wouldn't touch sushi to someone who loves sushi in the last couple of weeks. Especially California Rolls. They're really nice! Oh, and Tofu, must not forget Tofu!!! (or dofu as it's called here. Call it tofu and people just stare at you blankly.... kinda like when you try to speak Chinese to them). I'd only ever eaten tofu once in Australia and now I'm ordering it whenever I can get it. Fried, raw, boiled in some sort of sauce, don't care. Love it. Of course, I'm also eating waaaaaaay more McDonald's and KFC than I did back home, but some days you just can't stomach the thought of eating another 'chinese' meal. The foods great, but you just need a break some days.

In other news I've managed to find a place in Gongbei where you can get fish and chips. Honest to god fish and chips mind you! You can get a fisherman's basket for Y19 (crab sticks, fish, chips, and calamari) which is extremely cheap for fish and chips. It's at the Gongbei underground in this Fashion Food court run by the Macanese food group. You can also get Pizza (but the pizza looks dodgy), sandwiches, kebabs, sushi, tepenyaki, and muffins there.

Tomorrow I'm going back to macau (again) to pick up my asthma medication. I'll be going after Chinese class (which finishes at 12) and lunch. I'm going out for lunch after class with Linda, Ollie (Linda's boyfriend), Greg (an Aussie teacher that used to be with TPR but is now teaching somewhere else) and possibly Michelle. I think we might be going for Xianyang food, could be wrong, but if we are whooo boy. It's gonna be SPCIY (but really nice, I've had this food before. There's a restaurant somewhere in Jida that's got cheap food and an English menu).

You can guess how we socialize over here. We go out for lunch or dinner in a big group and terrify the staff when we walk in LOL. You can see the panicked thoughts going through their heads: "Oh, my god. Foreigners, big group of foriegners. What do we do? What do we do? What do we doooooooo?". Mixed up orders are a common and the language barrier can be quite a problem even when most of us can speak a bit of chinese (or a lot. Some of us have been here a while and can hold decent conversations). It takes a while for their brains to compute that we're actually speaking Chinese to them. They think we're speaking English, not chinese. Patience is a very important word over here.

E.g, you get into a cab and tell them "WanCaiSha" (which is the area I live). The cabbie stares at you blankly. You say it again. Blank look from Cabbie. Say it again, and they blink, and then go "Oooohhh. WanCaiSha" in EXACTLY the same tones that you'd just said it three times. LOL. Rather frustrating when it's about 3 in the morning, you're tired and just want to get home, but other times it's just funny.

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