Since you know how fond I am of my happy lists, I decided I should dedicate one to our trip to China. (Shame on me for not writing anything about that already). Though, China didn’t always made me happy. The first email I sent to my friends and family back home started with the sentence: Do I like China? I find it hard to answer that question with just one answer. So, that’s why this time there’s not only a happy list.. but, also a ‘angry’ list! Let’s kick off with the negative one right ;)
- Okay, maybe this is a bit more our fault since we totally underestimated this as a potential problem, but: why doesn’t anyone in China speak English? For instance, without the name of your hotel in Chinese for the taxidriver you’re totally lost. Asking for directions, wondering what kind of meat is inside your noodles (bullfrog? Snake?), asking if you’re room is ready.. forget it. *Deep sight*
- Angry list China Edition a.k.a. the things in China that I didn’t like
- Their manners. Spitting, gurgling, farting, burping, sweating, smelling, scratching and any other dirty verbs ending with –ing. Constantly! Everywhere!
- The way they drive. One hand is either holding a phone or is pressing the horn, the other one is either stirring or using the handbrake (why is that anyway?). They pass fully loaded trucks while we’re approaching a hill or a dangerous bend in the road and I just close my eyes. Seriously, do Chinese people have the infinite life, without us knowing it?
- I just love my breakfast. And I also really need my breakfast. But nooooo I do not want rice, pork chops, pickled vegetables, smoked fish, seaweed or any other inappropriate food as the first thing I eat in the morning. I’m not totally a culture barbarian, so I tried some dumplings, sushi, sate and even some of their ‘delicious’ hot orange juice. But nope, it’s not my cup of tea.
- Okay, this may sound really rude and bad, but why are there so many Chinese! And why do they always want to visit the same things at the same time? They clearly don’t mind waiting in long, long, long lines (since they’re obviously used to it), but I don’t! When we’ve visited the Forbidden City, I really wanted to make some pictures of the beautiful temples and squares. Think again, when you take a picture, it’s almost 90% filled with Chinese people and hey isn’t that little dot the top of a temple.. Great photo!
Hmm, I could go one with this list for a little while, but that’s not the right state of mind. So let’s move over to the positive side okay? (I just had my first yoga lesson, so I’m totally into this *homm.. positive thoughts and feelings.. hommm*)
Happy List China Edition a.k.a. All the things I loved about our trip
- Without any doubts the number one on my happy list, the moment I caught my breath again after a heavy climb and realized: I’M STANDING ON THE GREAT WALL OF CHINA! The view was so awesome and it was just the two of us (well, at least for a while) standing there, jumping up and down, taking pictures.. Amazing.
- Going back to Hong-Kong to find out that the sweet and sour pork at Spicy Crab at the Temple Street Night Market was still so good.
- The hours I spent at the back of our motorcycle, watching hills, dirt road, villages, markets, people, water buffalos and palm trees passing by. With the sun in my face, the wind running through my hair and my arms tightly wrapped around my boyfriend.
- The Taichi lesson in Yangshuo. Even though it was early in the morning, it was already so warm, we slithered through the room. It was really intense, but it was so much fun. And the way your body feels afterwards, so flexible and relaxed.
- Sitting underneath a palm tree, drinking milk out of a coconut, listing to the sound of the waves and feeling the hot sand between my toes at Hainan Island.
- The view from the Oriental Pearl Tower in Shanghai
- The moment we’ve finally fixed ourselves two train tickets from Beijing to Shanghai (Train? Shanghai? Tickets? Anyone? Help!)
- The great restaurants we’ve had dinner at. The delicious Thai food in the French Concession, the amazing Indian food at Yangshuo, the tasty (and expensive!) Chinese food at Ghost Street Beijing, the great vegetarian restaurant and hmm.. the Italian restaurant with an actual Italian chef in Sanya.
- All the times we’ve laughed our asses of because of all the silly things we saw and heard and the wrong English translations (A rape sandwich?).
- Like I said, our trip trough China wasn’t always that fun. There were many struggles, problems and difficulties. But being together, fixing those problems together and still being able to laugh about it afterwards is what totally made my vacation amazing. Thank you J