April 16, 2009

Just Add Ham, or Little Green Men are Not to be Trusted!

Greetings from the Mainland!
Another week is nearly done!  How time seems to whiz past.  Jessica and I have felt rather stretched this past week on the Chinese language front, but we seem to be emerging onto yet another plateau.  We'll rest here a while, content to now be able to tell time, speak in strange and rather abstract type of past tense, and ask for basic directions.  Of course, it's more or less useless to ask for directions if you can't understand the answer...
Today is Shooter's birthday.  That'd be Jude, for anyone who doesn't know him that well.  He's Shooter with his closest pals - he only goes by Jude at the office.  Now, it turns out that here in China, they sing "Happy Birthday to You" with the same tune we do.  The words are different, of course.  Zhu Ni Shengri Kuai le!  In a land were karaoke is hugely popular (it's called KTV here, or karaoke television), it shouldn't seem at all strange that I spent a portion of my language class singing Happy Birthday to You in Chinese with my teacher.
Did we do anything for Shooterbaum's birthday?  Well, no.  But before your Shengri Kuai Le Ship dashes upon the reefs of the Isle of Melancholy, please know that we've merely deferred the festivities until Saturday.  We plan to go to the "Kite Show" (recall that this is the park, according to Ari), where we will discreetly inquire as to how much it costs for the boys to go in the "Jumping Palace" (again, Ari's name for the small amusement park at one corner of the park).
I've got a few pictures I'd like to share.  First, we have a strange flat of, well, eggs:
I'm afraid I do not like green eggs and ham.
On to the next picture.  This one I enjoy simply because it is colourful:

Here's a shot of a tree that's starting to send out its leaves.  This picture is already a week old, and most of the trees already have leaves on them.  In fact, most of the flowers that were everywhere last week have faded, and now the parks are very green.  But this photo has a geometric quality to it that I like:

And finally, I think I'm really starting to hate the way that cars whip through crosswalks...  It's insult to injury that some crosswalks even have signals.  A little green man appears, beckoning to you, whispering, "Step out onto the road!"  And then, WHAM!


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