Melanie Spiller & Coloratura Consulting
A Tonic for Ramshackle Wordsmiths
Copyright Melanie Spiller 2011. Do not copy without permission.
Letters from China: January 9, 2010
I've been in China for four days now, and I couldn't be having a better time. We spent a day in Chengdu, and visited the Giant Panda preserve. The bears were adorable, and the signs, translated into English, were hilarious. There are photos of some, but I think my dad took most of those images.
Then, we caught a plane for a one-hour flight to LiJiang, which is a charming place in every respect. Based mostly on the tourist trade after the horse and tea trade business cooled, three separate minorities are well established here and vend their wares in stalls and little boutique-like shops.
In town, the signs are often in English as well as Chinese, but no one speaks much English beyond "Helloooo." Outside of town, in the minority villages, people seem to have learned more English. "Very beautiful," "you like," "ten yuan," and so forth are common, but all conversations start and end with "hallooooo" and a big grin.
The weather couldn't be more congenial. It threatened to drizzle in Chengdu, but LiJiang has been sunny and about 65 degrees, which is about perfect for strolling around and looking at stuff.
Oh, and the food? Marvelous! They don't have any problems with my (stupid and irritating) no nightshades thing and I am also having no trouble going meatless. Yesterday, we ate twice at a place that made the most astonishingly good tofu, mushroom, green onion, and ginger stir fry. Today, the others ate pork dumplings, but I got a bowl of peanuty noodles. Mine was better. :-) Marvelous stuff.
Well, others wait for the computer so I must be polite and end here. I'm having a GREAT time, though. GREAT!!!