I ate Hong Kong

In class today we were having a practice dialogue, and I told my teacher that I ate Hong Kong for breakfast. I meant to say banana. It was one of those classes, where you get your 香蕉 mixed up with your 香港.

And the other day I was “talking” to an older guy on the bus, as is our custom, asking him where he was going and where he was from (Hebei) – basically trying to make a conversation by patching together different phrases from our lessons.

I thought I’d told him I was going to school (学校 – xué xiào), which is on Zǐ Jīn Shān Lù (紫金山路 – the street name). He seemed a little puzzled, and when the bus came near the water park (several stops before mine), he started trying to tell me I needed to get off. He eventually got off himself and was replaced by an older lady with white hair (there are a lot of older people in Tianjin).

How bad is my accent: I tried to say “xué xiào” and he heard “shuǐ shàng” (shuǐ shàng gōng yuán = 水上公园 = water park). The bus was noisy. That must be it.

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Still stalling on picking a Chinese name. But we managed, with our Chinglish powers combined, to hunt down an apartment and arrange the meeting to negotiate with the landlord. We called in reinforcements for the negotiations on Sunday night, and it all went great. We move in to a hopefully more permanent place this weekend!

2 thoughts on “I ate Hong Kong”

  1. And at this stage, it really is “with our Chinglish powers combined.” Sometimes I’ll recognize a word or phrase and know how to respond, sometimes Joel will. Most of the time neither of us do! It’s a good thing we’re in this together…:D Anyway, we keep trying, and apparently we knew enough to get taken to see a bunch of apartments…which is more than we knew 3 weeks ago! :D

    We can also order food at restaurants, as of about 3 weeks ago. Progress is being made slowly…beginning with food, shelter, and working our way upward from there.

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