Another White Guy in China Blog

Seriously...it's just another "White guy in China" Blog

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Here’s a photographic journey through the best commute I’ve ever had.

It’s a 25-minute walk past the taxi area (1), down a wooded path in Living Water Park (2), along the river (3), across a bridge (4), through an abandoned amusement park that’s been converted to a park (5, 6), through an old neighborhood (7), under the West Pearl Tower (8 - almost twice as tall as the Space Needle!), down Shuanglin Lu (9) and to my school gates (10). 

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I found this interesting because:
1. Everything is OTC in China.
2. Cialis roughly translates to “hope love strong.” Viagra, which is only in Chinese on the sign, translates to “big older brother.” 

I found this interesting because:

1. Everything is OTC in China.

2. Cialis roughly translates to “hope love strong.” Viagra, which is only in Chinese on the sign, translates to “big older brother.” 

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In China, you need a “guy” or a “lady” for everything. I have my dumplings guy who makes the best jiaozi. My friend has a coat lady who makes custom winter coats. My bike guy can fix any problem with my bike. 
This is the puppy guy. He rides around on an e-bike with a glass cage full of puppies, hoping to be seen by a rich couple experiencing an emotional gap in their relationship. 

In China, you need a “guy” or a “lady” for everything. I have my dumplings guy who makes the best jiaozi. My friend has a coat lady who makes custom winter coats. My bike guy can fix any problem with my bike. 

This is the puppy guy. He rides around on an e-bike with a glass cage full of puppies, hoping to be seen by a rich couple experiencing an emotional gap in their relationship. 

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Since irony in fashion hasn’t hit China yet, I’m pretty sure this girl’s t-shirt should read “good cook.”

Since irony in fashion hasn’t hit China yet, I’m pretty sure this girl’s t-shirt should read “good cook.”

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Right now, I’m supposed to be teaching a class for other teachers who want to learn about American culture. Nobody showed up. Message received.

Right now, I’m supposed to be teaching a class for other teachers who want to learn about American culture. Nobody showed up. Message received.

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Hainan is not what most people think about when they think of China: tropical beaches, clean air, massive parks and people not spitting loogies. Earlier this month, I went on a visa run to Haikou, the capital of the island province of Hainan, and other than the dreary government offices in which I spent most of my time, it resembled nothing of mainland China. 

The lifestyle is more relaxed, and the people are much more diverse. I overheard conversations in more languages than I could count. People slept all afternoon on any surface they could find under shade. The chill atmosphere disappeared on the streets and sidewalks however, where motorbikes dominate (literally) all other modes of transportation. There are massive waves of loud, aggressive motorbike drivers on every surface that can support a bike. They are at the top of the transportation food chain, and they stop for nothing.

The parks were a pleasant surprise. I visited two massive parks in the downtown area that are built on a scale I’d never imagine seeing inside a city. The parks have full amusement parks built in, fitness equipment, running paths, man-made lakes (with rowboats and bumper boats!), legions of vendor shops, picnic groves, festival-size performance stages, and enough open green space to land a space shuttle. Despite all this, I saw maybe 10 people in each park, not counting the 200+ employees doing security, performing maintenance, selling food to the masses of people who never came and operating the rides that nobody was riding. It was beautiful and eerie.

The beaches were a more Chinese affair. Skinny alpha males horsing around in the water, showing off to the tittering, head-to-foot-covered females watching from the water’s edge. In the evening, they filled with people watching the sunset and occasionally letting off lanterns into the sky. The crowds dispersed about 10:30 to eat barbecue and drink beer at one of the thousands of BBQ stands that pop up in almost every parking lot around the city after dark. Not a bad way to end the day.