zt Lindsey MM在中国
**From [梦想家的学徒时代] **
What I Will And Will Not Miss About China
10:19am Wednesday, Jun 13
A note thus titled by my Australian friend Loz who also teaches in Nanjing has prompted me to write one of my own, as a fitting “goodbye for now, see you soon” tribute to my second home, China. (It should be clear which ones I will miss and which I will not. I will clarify as necessary.)
People thinking white skin is beautiful. God, I love that.
Wondering if this is your last day on earth every time you enter a taxi. Or cross the street.
The hocking of loogies, everywhere. You all have no idea. (Okay, well some of you do.)
Children peeing and pooing right on the street.
Having to explain that even “一点点” (a little bit) of meat makes a dish no longer vegetarian. Also having to tell them that 火腿肠 (hotdog meat) is indeed meat and no, yes I’m sure, it is not a vegetable.
Buying Starbucks on a Chinese salary. Ouch.
How super helpful Chinese people can become when they see you’re foreign.
How they become even nicer when you speak Chinese.
How disappointed they become when they see you know how to bargain.
Buddhist vegetarian restaurants.
Chinese gaudy decorations and the insane amounts of fluorescent lights they have on at night. (Yes, I will miss this.)
Children saying “hello!” to me as I walk down the street. (Will miss.)
Guys saying “hello!” to me and laughing with their friends at their bravado as I walk down the street. (Not miss.)
How washing dishes often consists in rinsing them with cold water.
My good students.
My bad students. (Although to be perfectly honest, some of them were funny in their own way too… Most of them I will not miss.)
Students cheating on quizzes and thinking it’s normal or even funny.
白酒 Baijiu, a kind of Chinese alcohol. I will very much miss.
Eating meals with a large group of Chinese friends or my Chinese family.
Cab drivers asking me how much money I earn. Cab drivers telling me (not asking me) things about America and how rich we all are. As a matter of fact, I’m going to miss everything about Chinese cab drivers except their driving.
People very flatteringly (if completely inaccurately) comparing me to 大山 (a Canadian in China extremely famous for speaking perfect Chinese).
Chinese children. The most adorable children in the world.
Really fat Chinese men pulling their shirts halfway up in hot weather.
Riding with 70 other people on a bus meant for 30 on a really hot day. (Did I mention most Chinese people do not wear deodorant?)
Chinese people talking about me thinking I don’t understand.
Knowing how to write characters that Chinese people forget, and writing it for them. (Granted, this has only happened once, but it was a great feeling.)
How direct Chinese people are. (“You know him, the really fat one.” “Excuse me?!”)
Nanjing dialect. (啊是啊?)
Suzhou dialect. (啊是个啊?)
The Chinglish signs. (“Civilized behavior of tourists is another bright scenery.” “Mouse salad.” “For defecate, go to F2.” And, compliments of Loz, “Cunt examination room.” I kid you not.)
Having to boil water before you can drink it.
Garbages often consisting in piles on the corner of streets.
Hot soymilk and youtiao in the morning. (How can I go back to cereal?)
Being violently elbowed by ninety-year old Chinese women to get on the bus.
The complete lack of any safety railings at national resorts.
Chinese people telling me how annoying it is that there are so many Chinese people.
Little white dogs with dyed fluorescent green or orange ears. This may be particular to my road in Nanjing, but I see it a lot.
The lines, oh god, the lines. (Or should I say, the complete lack of any concept of what the word “line” should mean?)
And, most of all, I’m going to miss all of my Chinese friends and my Chinese family so much I try not to think about it. I highly recommend China to everyone, I have so many great memories from my year here.