Everyday observations of my new city.

Trip Start Aug 05, 2011
Trip End Oct 08, 2012

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What I did
Hechi city

Flag of China  , Guangxi Zhuang,
Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Damn,  what a Wednesday:   I left the house with a fellow teacher and we went to get a Hepatitus B shot. The first hospital didn't do vaccines so we went to a clinic near my apartment. My colleague, an American speaks good Chinese  and has a lovely wife who speaks excellent Chinese as well.   Nice couple to have for neighbors.  She rides bikes with me on occasion and the dude and I play Chinese board games.  Since we are the only Americans in town,  we tend to be closer than if we lived next door in Dallas for instance.  We plan to celebrate fourth of July with a BBQ up on the roof.  So my American comrade assists me in getting the vaccines for Hep A,  they wanted 70 dollars for the rabies vaccines,  so i am just going to wait for the dog bite then take the shots in the stomach like a man.   I ride out in the country and there are many wild dogs who haven't been eaten yet.

In this part of China the hours between 12 and 3 are for resting.  The city traffic becomes light, some shops close, in other shops the owner is laying back in a chair sound asleep.  Then people are out and about from 3 till midnight.   I am a mid day nap enthusiast who hates the time from 1 PM to 3 PM,  I used to call it "The Bastard Time".   I prefer to sleep then and stay up till 1 AM when it's cool and quiet.  

  After the three hour mid-day siesta,  I left the house and bought the ingredients for my famous "Chicken Gumbo".    I made this faithfully for the next two hours.   I won't bore you by braggin about my great cooking,  mainly because it wasn't that good.   I bought roasted chicken,  since buying a live chicken and watching it get chopped up was the other alternative (I am becoming more and more vegetarian).   So the cooked chicken reeked of Anise and other Chinese spices which taste like ass when mixed into a gumbo,  or anything else for that matter.   Italian spice sense = GOOD,   Middle Eastern Spices and usage = GOOD,   Spices from India = GOOD,  Chinese understanding and use of spices =  WTF!!!!   NEVER have I eaten something here that is spiced correctly.   I have had plenty of delicious food in China,  but never due to the spice selection,  it's due to the chicken broth and msg or the ingredients themselves.    The cooked spiced chicken ruined the gumbo for me.   I ate a large bowl and toiletted the rest.


I did go out around 9 PM due to boredom and sat outside a small store whose owners seemed to like the company.  After hangin outside the store for a long time, the family that owned the space next door; invited me inside for a Chinese dinner,  although they had no idea who I was, or how to speak English, we still manged to communicate quite well and I felt as though I was part of their lovely family.  I love being part of other peoples families,  it's as good as it gets over here.   Each family has familier characters that I am well used to.  Mom, Dad, kids, grandparents, and "Uncle Shit-ass",  nearly every fam has an uncle like that.   The fun families drink a little and have a fun time.  The not-so-fun families are either Teatotalers are drunken slobs.   Most Chinese families are in the middle.    My family back home is in the middle as well,  although there isn't a formal dinner every night.   I think this is where China and other countries have America beat.  The entire family shows up for dinner.   Including grandparents and teenagers.   They live so close.  Most endearing to say the least.  As a guest of many family dinners it never fails to touch my heart to be present.   


Thursday I went with a lovely employee of my school to the capital of this county "Hechi" (pronounced "hutcher"),  in order to get my coveted "residence permit".   This is my Green Card which allows me to work in the Middle Kingdom  (China).   Nice beautiful scenery all the way to "Hutcher" and the city was a nice looking modern city.   I would like to live in Hechi for certain.  Much like my current town of "Yizhou" but cleaner, nicer parks,  a little larger,  less cess-poolage...    But Yizhou is another lovely mountain valley/river city and has alot going for it.   It has ME! My guide is a very prim and proper young woman (30ish) who sports a lovely hat.  She dresses quite retro and cool in that prim "librarian" sort of way. She is proper enough to grimace whenever we walk past a table of heathens drinking and playing Mah Jhong at the outdoor market during the day.   This actually happened when she showed me the outdoor market and gambling house!!!   My guide is a good person,  I like her company too some extent, but never will there be a  connection.   I'm just too profane for people like her.  She has a unique ability to tell me this without speaking or actually saying this to me.  Oh well...


I did meet a couple members of the local bike riding community whom I am just starting to meet.  I am going on my first group ride on Sunday evening.   Many have done rides of 300 K and more.  I plan to ride with them as much as possible in the next couple months.


I have mentioned how Medieval China is.   The Universities are all walled compounds with just a few "Gates" in order to enter and exit.   I live by the gate and watch the guards admit or question those who seek to enter the ancient gate.  Hundreds of peasants and nobles pass through this gate (a big fecking arch like in the middle ages),  every hour.  I watch the traffic from my fourth floor vantage point.   I'm also 30 feet away from the ladies dorm,  they like to watch me while I type and surf,   curious about the large zoo animal I suppose.  Usually I leave my windows covered.   Nice neighbors for the most part. They do add to the lovely scenery.

 On occasion a big Mercedes or the equivalent slithers through the gate, some of these Party officials are rolling in the dosh. Many fail to smile.  They are the Dukes and Princes of the Castle,  I'm sure a King is kickin' around here as well.  I consider myself a court jester or "white Monkey",  mainly here to add prestige to the University.   Many Uni teachers in China feel the same way.  The students are the citizens and most peasants live outside the gate.    I  see many garbage pickers who make a ten thousandth as much as a "Duke".  Most ride old chinese bikes from the 50's with a welded-on side cart for collecting trash.  They dress poorly.   They are mostly noticed for the genuine smiles on their faces.   These poor folks idolize Chairman Mao,  Chairman Mao fought for these people.  



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