Chinese Sins and Trains – Spice in any Life.

Trip Start Jun 25, 2012
Trip End Sep 12, 2012

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Flag of China  , Sichuan,
Friday, August 17, 2012

It's 5:48am and so as not to wake my family I’m sitting quietly in a hotel hallway in Chengdu, China (home of spicy food, Panda Bears and over 14 million people!). We arrived here after travelling 2600km by train in about 45 hours (I’m afraid to say an hour here is the same as one there!).  All six of us are sharing one hotel room (for the same cost as two) which took a long time to find as many hotels don’t accept foreigners unless they stay at 4 star or better (more about Blacks, drug dealers and criminals later).

As a result of age/seniority, James and Monique both were delegated a spot on the floor while the rest shared two double beds.  I’m not sure what 'kind’ of room we got but James seems most intrigued by the bathroom/shower that separates us all by a clear glass wall and a curtain that he finds difficult keeping closed.  Some of my suspicion has been answered while sitting quietly in the hallway and seeing the parade of young ladies leaving the hotel rooms alone.  I must say, a trio of 88 pound pretty young Chinese girls/women staggering (from too much alcohol and night) down the hallway is not the nicest site at 6:30am – I prefer a sunrise.  Not only that, but the sound of vomiting and dry-heaving echoing down the hallways bellows a reminder of what some are trying to reverse and forget from the night before.  Perhaps this is just another big city where things like this happen all the time (more on sexism and male domination later).

Prior to arriving in Chengdu, we were in the Southern City of Zhuhai which now in comparison to Chengdu’s massive size (traffic, people, and smog) is now only but a dream.  We had a wonderful time meeting and eating with old and new friends alike.  Zhuhai now seems like a small town with about a million people.  Zhuhai is small enough that we could (and they us) still recognize our gate guard and garbage man from 3 years prior when we lived there.

We were especially proud of Sabrina as she completed a week long ‘homestay’ with a Chinese teacher and her family.  Homestays or getting ‘close to’ a Chinese family is just not a common occurrence so everyone was surprised and blessed by the mutual time of learning and loving.  Sabrina built many long term relationships while going full speed at learning Chinese.  We know Sabrina has learned a lot in those 7 days as she was reported to be sleep talking in Chinese!  Hen Hao Sabrina!!

More sensitive and  less politically correct (PC) topics:

-         Blacks are despised here like the plague

o    Yet the Chinese go crazy over American basketball

o    All Blacks are considered drug dealers

         Hanging out with a Black (American or otherwise) would be like getting caught sun tanning in China

o    Not the thing to do!

o    Janice and I almost tripped over one another when we saw a lone ‘Asian looking’ man in a speedo sun bathing along the waterway to Macau.  I couldn’t help myself so we approached the man and asked what he was doing - he was from Australia!

o    Dark is bad – white is good

         Sights of young Pretty little Chinese girls/women holding onto fat old white foreigners

o    Not sure what the locals think but our girls are not too impressed

         China is full of racism (just like anywhere else)

         Sexism is alive and well here         

o    One child policy has only highlighted the dominance of the boy/man.

         Marriage and 1 child policy, more boys than girls yet girls find it almost impossible to find a husband.

o    You would think it would be easy for a Chinese woman to find a husband – NOT!!

  Marriage is more about position and perception rather than feelings and relationships.

  I have witnessed many marriages ‘weakening’ as economic prosperity is dividing families by distance and divorce.

When communicating with our friend in Chengdu she said that the weather there was ‘very good’ only to find out to the Chinese ‘very good’ weather is cloudy, smoggy, and rainy because that minimizes the risk of getting darker from the sun. 

We were reminded this week that what is paradise for one could be the opposite for another (I guess that is why the Vancouver rain does not hinder the migration of Chinese).  We hope you have found your paradise and be reminded that the grass is NOT greener on the other side – somebody just peed there!!

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