Saturday, April 12, 2008

Ok, here is day one.

Mark is up before 6am to get a shuttle bus to the mainland where he works.

I woke around 9:30 thanks to the squeal of the gears of the machines they are using to dig out the foundation supports. It is a rather nasty noise.

Tina and I had toast for breakfast and went out to do a little sightseeing. We walked through the market and picked up some fruit to try this weekend - some things we never see at home.

Not too many crates for animals, but they have bags of frogs, (not cute ones) and turtles. Some very interesting-looking crustaceons too. It is much like the market in Jodphur, messy and stinky but with no flower sellers.

We saw a guy on a bicycle picking up a pig from a truck which had carcasses hanging in the back. As we stopped to watch (and take pictures) they slung two half pigs over the back of the bike - they hung just above the road, with legs sticking everywhere, and to cap it off, he hung the viscera over the handlebars! It looked very funny. He was thrilled that we were watching and taking photos, and smiled at Tina.

Tina is managing Mandarin very impressively. She sounds native to my ear.

We stopped at a dvd store, with a vast array of bootleg merchandise available. I would buy some ($1 each) but I don't know if our dvd players are all region and can read the zone 9 format. Let me know.

We had lunch at a noodle house. It was quite a lovely place and the food was very good. I had a noodle soup with spareribs, but you will laugh at this, it came with a soup to start.

The tea they served was really wonderful. Unlike anything I have ever had, I will try to buy some. Even Yasmin would be able to drink it without milk or sugar.

Lunch was wonderful. After, we took a taxi to the Marco Polo area, where the ex-pats live to book our trip to Wuyu Shan (I think) and then we sat outside at a restaurant and sipped wine and talked for a while. Tina insisted on a full bottle because it was cheaper, so we were a little tipsy on the cab ride back to the apartment.

We rested for an hour or so until Mark came home and then went to meet their friend Sue who is Maylaysian Chinese, and her two young sons Daniel and Ben. We tried several restaurants before we found one with a table available and had a marvellous Chinese meal of steamed bok choy, corn, pork loin, beef, and two types of fish. One was a wonderful slightly spicy sauce and the other had heat like a blast furnace!

We then walked the boys home so that they could go to bed, and we went to Sue's wine store and coffee house and sat out on the upstairs deck and drank wine and talked and talked and ate cucumber flavoured potato chips and ate yummy smoked duck and argued about the evolution of man amongst other things.

We finally collapsed at about 2am and slept until about 11 this morning. I was thundering and pouring rain until about noon, so we didn't miss much.

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