Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Speaking Chinglish

You know how you begin to pick up an accent when you visit a place like Canada or down South? Jeff and I now find ourselves speaking to each other in Chinglish. We don't bother using a full sentence like, 'Yes, we have it." Instead, it has now become, "Yes. We have." We say other things like: "No problem for you," and "Very cheaper for you." Since it's harder to understand English speakers when we use contractions, we have stopped using them. We now sound very stilted, which gets amusing when I hear Jeff talking to other Americans and forgetting he can use contractions. So rather than saying, "We'll go to the store," we use the formal, "We will go to the store." Other fun phrases, 'Come and have a look,' "have some healsy (healthy) water," and "This one please." (This is from the elevator guy who waits for the 'ding' sound of the elevator arriving. Then, stating the obvious, he points to the elevator and says, 'this one please.') Jeff finds this highly amusing, so if there is no elevator guy, and Jeff hears the ding, he makes sure he turns around and tells me, 'this one please.')

This afternoon, my Chinese helper and I were heading back to the hotel when she decided that I should go shopping for some new clothes since they are 'very cheaper for you here.' Sigh.... I knew it would be fruitless. Nothing fits me here. Sometimes however, it is just easier to go along, rather than try to explain. So off we went into the sea of holiday shoppers with two strollers. Like I said, it's like Christmas shopping-on-steroids. It is their Chinese New Year soon, so they have an even higher volume of shoppers. Compound that with the blaring music in each store and you have a recipe for utter chaos and noise. I am no stranger to shopping in heavy crowds, but I leave the kids at home. My sweet helper was determined that I would find something, so we went to shop after shop. After two hours, she had to admit defeat and head to the hotel.


The girls did very well today without Jeff being here. Last night was a bit rough for Zoey but today she was fine until about 30 minutes before his return. She began to cry off and on. When she saw him, she burst into tears and held her arms out. My heart turned over! She was SO happy to see her Baba again.

Neither child is used to being disciplined, so when I have to tell them no, they get a bit peeved. Kate's knickers were in a twist much of the morning because I wouldn't let her have Coke. Overall though, both of them are very happy the majority of the time. They are doing remarkably well!

Yesterday we saw these dismembered manequin body parts lying in the bushes. It looked like something from a CSI show. A guy was leaning over examining them and before we knew it, he picked up the torso and carted it off! I didn't get my camera out quick enough to get his photo, but here is the rest of the 'body.' We passed it several times that day and each time, the parts had been rearranged. Last night, they were gone. I wonder what happened to them?


We leave for Hong Kong in the morning. We will spend the night there so that we don't have to get up at the crack of dawn to catch our Friday morning flight home.
Here are some more pictures of our time in China.


Parking lot for bikes


Interesting modes of transportation




If traffic is heavy, no problem. Just drive on the sidewalk. And don't forget to honk at pedestrians because you can now act as though you have the right of way.


"Your washing machine is on the delivery vehicle, Ma'am."


Very Fresh Meat


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