What a day! I took a taxi to Home Sweet Home today, he tried to get a little extra cash by driving around, must have thought I was a stupid American. I started telling him to turn around and go back and he would go to turn where he wasn’t supposed to a little arguing and I finally got to my destination. Not a big deal. I was greeted with friendly smiles and people calling my name and we soon got started with work again. I worked in the factory again today – what happened to teaching English?! Anyways I am going to talk to the person in charge tomorrow. I worked with some of the guys today on their English and they helped me with my Chinese. By mid morning I had them all singing Chinese songs, they sounded so good! One of the guys next to me wasn’t there yesterday and had a lump on his left collarbone. One of the head people came in and pulled him aside and appeared to be looking at it and said something I couldn’t understand. The man came back and told me that he fell two days ago and his collarbone broke and came through his skin and that he was leaving to go get it fixed. Chills ran up and down my spine, especially after I was told he could only take one day off of work because he had to come back to pay for things. WOW! Aren’t we spoiled?!? Soon it was time to leave and a little person (sorry if that is not the right terminology) was taking me to the bus stop on a 3 wheeled scooter. Well if a white girl wasn’t enough of a sight!!! Not only were people staring they were stopping and staring, or walking with their heads turned back watching!
I got to my bus stop and decided to walk for a bit, I knew there were more stops ahead for my bus and I would just walk and experience the town a bit. I wonder sometimes if my curiosity and cravings for adventure are sometimes pushed to lack of common sense…? I can’t help it I want to take it all in- so I do! I never once felt unsafe I must say, but I thought as I crossed six lanes of traffic and had people staring and walked over bridges and down sidewalks, that maybe a white girl with a camera and a purse probably should not walk alone. I felt content as I walked down the streets, listening to children laugh, people talk, and cars zoom by. People don’t question you if you walk with your head high and shoulders back, in China this tells a lot about a person, and if you engage somebody in a bit of Chinese they seem to not question your being as much. I have to say for the record…. I am white, I know I’m white, it’s nothing special! Hahaha so many looks, you would think I was walking around purple or something!! Anyways I eventually got on the bus and headed for Carrefour where I ate lunch. Lunch consisted of rice, seaweed, seaweed/egg/broth soup, something I have no clue what it was and chicken. So your goal for the day is to be adventurous -try something new I did!! I tried it all, then filled up on rice haha.
I decided after lunch that I wanted to grab a cab and head to the subway. I flagged down a cab and told the driver I wanted to go to jin ditie chezhan – nearest subway station. He took me and I hopped on and headed for Century Avenue, where I switched to the green line (2). While on the subway Ms. Evelyn sent me a text saying "if you want to get to the subway station show him this: (chinese characters)." I laughed and sent her a text thanking her but informing her I was already on the subway and had gotten a cab. I think she was pleasantly surprised haha. Spent some time walking through the shopping down there… miss miss! Coach! Gucci! You need shoe? Purse? Suitcase? Miss miss!... haha it was an experience, and I’m proud to say I didn’t buy a thing haha. After that I grabbed a drink and some blueberry thing at KFC and walked to a park across the street. I figured I would start walking home and grab a taxi if I got tired. I walked through the park and got side tracked and ended up somewhere, still not quite sure! Walked a couple of miles and then grabbed a taxi that took me home. I sat on the couch for a bit with Ms. Evelyn and told her about my day. Grabbed a quick shower and attempted a nap but couldn’t sleep.
Had dinner then headed out to meet a group of American girls. One was here for 2 ½ months as a nanny, another was helping out with a program a friend started and the other lives here with her family now. She actually used to go to Calvary when they lived in Charlotte 10 years ago! Small world we live in!! They knew/know some of the families I know. We hung out for a couple of hours and now I am off to bed. Tomorrow is Home Sweet Home, a possible massage, and Puxi with one of the girls I met!