AsiaChina

setting up my place.

China Travel Blog

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a street cobbler, It says "shu xie" shoe repair, on the box
My new flat was totally bare so setting it up was a priority for me. I needed to do a good washing but there was no water yet so I went and knocked on the next door. "Yeah" said a the rail thin young guy (most Chinese are slim unless they have a real reason not to be) that opened the door " hey there, I'm movin next door and I was wonderin.. could I use some water? Ya know for washin and stuff" I put on a winning grin (it always gets me places), this was all in Putonghua Chinese of course. "possible (xing)" he said and opened the door "come(lai)"  I went in and found the bathroom. I looked around, the place was a disaster (hygiene isn't a strong point for Chinese) ,the tap was a garden lever type , " you with your family here?" I was talking over the sound of water hitting the bucket. His was a common story of backwater boy coming to the SEZ (Special Economic Zone) with dreams of making it big. His roomates were all strangers with similar stories and dreams. Living in these bleak conditions are normal for the average Chinese, I've seen it all before. " So where you from man?" I knew that was coming, " Oh me? I'm not Chinese" he looked me up and down "no, really? your chinese is good, so where are you from?".This dialogue happens alot for me. China is a big country, the levels of putonghua proficiency varies greatly in the coastal cities of migrants. I am not initially taken for a foriegner my accent and Asian features also help my disguise (again China is big, features vary)...
After I cleaned I went with Wang, my rommie, to get some furniture at the local 2nd hand and the market everthing beds, desk, gas stove, water heater etc cost about 10-15$ they installed the water heater too(drilling huge holes in the wall) alright... now for the living part...
Aopaq says:
Very intersting concernng your comment about Chinese features varying greatly. I assumed I would be immediately spotted as "Japanese" which I figured not always a good thing given the past history of the two countries. However, this did not happen which is good considering my plan to move there. Now if I can only learn to speak like you!
Posted on: Nov 07, 2007
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a street cobbler, It says shu xie…
a street cobbler, It says "shu xi…