I have discovered that with some patience my Chinese is not as bad as I had feared. I am not a strong speaker yet, but I know more of the language than the stewardesses on the flight, and helped my Chinese friend change her dinner, get the right drink, and stow away her luggage. I think I will make progress so long as I refuse to become shy and embrace the likelihood that I will make mistakes. After all, as the Chinese expression goes, failure is the mother of success!
My first experience upon arrival was to have the taxi ride of my life.
I had practiced on the plane how to ask the driver to take me straight to the hotel, as I was tired. Apparently I was clear enough, and he took the request to heart. We dodged and weaved through traffic, onto medians, and played a heart-thumping game of chicken with a blue truck.
The next day I walked around
Outside the café window a Chinese couple was taking pictures in front of a new bridge, and with the
As I left the coffee shop, it struck me how eager the two tourists were to demonstrate they had been to
Not quite recovered from the jet lag, my day ended quickly as I needed a rest. I was woken up a few hours later by deafening burst of fireworks, as the Chinese New Years Festival was in its grand finale. The sights were beautiful from my hotel window, but I couldn’t quite keep my eyes open long enough to see it all. It is a pity, this is such a beautiful city.