Sinicization

IMG_0734I think I’m turning Chinese I think I’m turning Chinese I really think so.
Here are some of the signs:
Due to a large unfortunate rip in one of my only two pairs of jeans, I am now the proud owner of a great pair of cut off shorts. Fortunately, the fashion here is to wear jean shorts over leggings. I’m not sure if I could get away with it back home, but I fit right in here.
I have actually started to crave Chinese food instead of just all the food I’m used to from home. Now, when I’m hungry for a mid afternoon snack, I sometimes think jianbing instead of turkey sandwich.
I have starting bringing pack lunches to work. While it’s only slightly cheaper than a tiao of dumplings down the block, it makes me feel like I’m getting the hang of China. Also, their equivalent of ramen noodles is wayyy better than ramen noodles.
Spice tolerance – I may actually have own now. I have been slowing acclimating myself and now willing put peppers into my dishes. No one else thinks it’s that spicy, but since I started from zero, it’s still something. My daddy will be so proud when I come home and fight him for the packets of pepper flakes for our pizzas.
I now think in terms of kuai instead of USD. I actually get indignant when shopping and anything is over 20 RMB, despite the fact that that is equivalent to about 3 dollars.
The insane markets that I wrote about previously no longer faze me. I still feel like I’m a terrible bargainer though. Mostly because all the shop ladies tell me I’m a great bargainer.
I have held entire conversations in Chinese and have been understood.
While the fear of death by insane drivers here still haunts me, I am no longer traumatized every time I have to cross the street. I may die on return though, since my crossing-the-street method is to just walk and hope nothing hits me. Which is in fact the advice I was given by Chinese people when I complained about the traffic.
I have more or less given up on coffee. It sucks and I hate it, but it is not to be found easily/cheaply and I can’t justify spending 25 kuai on coffee when I can get a month’s worth of tea for 11. Best believe I will drown myself in it when I get home though.
I found the underground metal music scene and have been participating with my friend Julie. There’s a great small bar venue called D22 that has local bands play live and has college metals nights every couple weeks. It’s fantastic. There’s moshing and everything. I didn’t think I would find my people here. However, the Chinese do not seem to understand metal that well. On a non-metal specific night, they were actually putting up rock on signs and moshing to, I kid you not, Coldplay. I wanting to cry or punch something.
And last but not least, my Halloween costume was *drumroll please* a panda. Indeed, I could only be more Chinese by wearing a qipao.

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One Response to “Sinicization”

  1. Surprise! After lurking and read only, then just forgetting to check, I thought I would shock you with a reply. Enjoy reading your web log and I will have coffee in your honor. Things on a stick makes me wonder if you can find carrot curry soup on a stick, Mmmmmmm…
    tchuss und ciao

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