Reflections on a Wandering Life.....

Friday, June 06, 2008

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Snow told me she was going to take me to a fish market today. When we got there, I was surprised. No fish tanks. No smell of fresh fish. This was a dried fish market. Very interesting, because, generally speaking, Chinese people will not eat fish that is not fresh. If you go to a supermarket in the States, you have a frozen food section where you can buy frozen seafood. If you go to the Walmart Superstore near my home in Beijing, you see fish tanks. You really do get spoiled in China. Fresh fish is not a luxury. It is the bottom line. When you go to a restaurant, the fish are live and swimming around until after you have ordered the meal for which it is going to be prepared. Somehow, though, dried fish is not like frozen fish. When you eat dried fish, it really is a different sort of thing. Not really a meal item. A snack most of the time, I think. Sorta like beef jerky. In the States, you probably wouldn't sit down and have a meal of beef jerky.

This evening, I went to the English corner at McDonald's. I met these guys by accident last Friday evening. Nice group of people. But I sorta lost track of time, and by the time I looked at my watch, it was twenty after eleven. One guy offered to take me out the the college, so I took him up on the offer. A bunch of us got in his car, because he is new in town, and wanted some help with directions. I was the only foreigner at this English corner. I think that's understandable in a town the size of Beihai. But, while I think it's very important for people learning English to listen regularly to native English, I also believe that speaking English with other folks at their own level is good practice, even if their language partners are not native speakers.

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