Having a great time! Everything is going smoothly. Wish you were here! Well, no, not actually, cuz then we'd be pretty crowded in our apartment and I'd have to translate for you guys all the time.
Today I saw the most amusing sign in my whole life, probably. It was:
SHANGHAI PUDDING DEVELOPMENT BANK
Now, for those of you who are familiar with China, they screw up lots when they try to translate signs into English. I didn't get a glimpse of the Chinese characters, so I didn't see if that was what they actually meant or if they accidentally added a "d" to Pu Ding (which would be a valid Chinese name). In any case, I got a nice little chuckle out of it.
Yesterday, my wife and I were out wandering around and spending indecently little for some great stuff, and we ran into a small herd of "DVD, VCD, CD" sellers. These people walk up and say "DVD?", and if you don't immediately cripple them with a shot to the knee, they will take you somewhere to sell you bootleg American DVDs. For the first time ever, I was approached by one in a department store rather than on the street. The cold weather and slim pickings must be making them desperate. So when this one said, "DVD?", I pointed back over my shoulder at the DVD section of the department store and said, "They're over there." Poor guy, one of his friends was standing nearby and understood enough English to find my response amusing. I hope he lives it down some day.
You may use the comment functionality of this entry to make suggestions of what you would like to hear about from my experiences in Beijing. Sunday I'm going to see Handel's Messiah in Chinese.
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