Thursday, February 21, 2013

Bucket List

Nothing really exciting is going on in my life.  I only have had one eventful thing in the last week that's even worth documenting.  I'll get to that in a minute.

Water came back on today.  WOO!  I only went 1 day without it, but I've been spending a lot of time at the dance studio, so coming back and having no water = not the best situation.  We're good for now though.  Speaking of dance studio, I've spent about 6-7 hours there this week and it's only Friday.  It's about time I get back in shape.  Seeing myself 'try' to 'dance' is pretty embarrassing right now.  Flexibility has gone downhill, strength is non existent, balance is awful.  I'm not even letting myself actually dance until I think I'm ready for it.  It might be a while.  Sometimes the owner, who lives above the studio, comes down and just watches me for a while and gives me a thumbs up occasionally.  He's an older man and pretty nice.  I just hate when people watch me attempt things I don't feel good enough at.  Then I tapped for a bit and some other man told me he wanted to go take a nap so I packed it up for the day.

Visa stuff is still incomplete.  I'm so ready for this to be done with and no longer an issue.  Maybe before August it'll all get settled.   If not, I'm leaving.  [I'm coming home then no matter what.  That's supposed to be a joke in case you didn't get that.]  Yesterday I went to have some part of the process taken care of and then went back to my boss's house for lunch.  His wife was cooking a traditional Hunan meal.  She's always working when I go over so it was nice to see her.  My boss had a friend from KM over too.  He was pretty funny.  Lunch was really good.  I love that Chinese meals are usually made up of 5-10 different dishes.  There's so much variety.  And none of this was too spicy which was nice.  We had moose (delicious), a turnip dish, other vegetables, some really incredible pork dish, a few other things and then... the stinky tofu.

-This is the highlight of my week.-

I have a bucket list for my time here and stinky tofu has been inconsistently on the list.  I take it off sometimes out of fear and then add it back on because I feel brave one day.  Well, we had it.  They all knew I was scared to try it so they watched me intently as I ate it.  Not bad.  I'd choose stinky tofu over yak butter tea any day!  This was prepared differently than the stuff they make on the streets.  It was in a bowl w/ sauce and wasn't fried.  It smelled bad if you put it up to your nose.  The street stuff reeks.  You can smell it from far away and it's nasty.  THAT is next on my list.   And we had some wine too.  I'm new to the wine world and this was a dry red wine... not my fave.  They toast A LOT in China.  I think in half an hour we toasted maybe 6 times.   That's much more than you ever seem to see in the states.

CHINA BUCKET LIST (in no specific order)
1. Watch a sunrise
2. Be a tourist for a day
3. Learn to make jiaozi (potstickers/dumplings)
4. Learn how to play mahjong 
5. Learn Chinese [I can speak some, but not as much as I'd like.]
6. Play Chinese jumprope in China
7. Have a whole outfit from China
8. Rent mopeds
9. Try stinky tofu
10. Learn to make baozi (steamed buns)
11. Watch someone I've lead, lead someone else [This one is in the process I think.]
12. Climb the mountain [It's an awful climb, but I want to do it again.]
13. Celebrate Chinese New Year in China
14. Participate in the Water Splashing Festival [This one happens in April.]
15. Send off a lantern during lantern festival [Sunday night hopefully.]

That's what I have for now.  I add things when they pop in my head, or after I've done them so I can keep track of the awesome things I get to do.

Lantern festival is on Sunday.  I'm going to my boss's in-law's house for dinner but I hope I get to make it to the lake that night to see everyone setting off their lanterns.  I have high expectations for this event. I hope it measures up.

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