We’re having our first real experience of gift-exchange where we can sort of see how it affects the relationship. We brought 老趙 and his wife (the couple that runs the fish soup place down the road) some stuff from Canada when we returned from our summer stint in Vancouver (Purdy’s chocolate, a calendar with pictures of B.C., some dulce). The next time we visited, he had a pile of homemade shrimp 餃子 (dumpings) for us, and on the next occasion, some Japanese desert things for us to take home. A month or so later we’d given out our other gifts to everyone else and still had some left over, so we brought them some beef jerky. Taiwan has its own style of jerky, but it’s different from North America. Since then the last couple times we’ve stopped in to chat they’ve all but forced us to sit down and eat something. We’re trying to refuse several times like we’re supposed to. Tonight on the way home from work makes the third time in a row. I wonder what we’re getting ourselves into, but it sure is fun. It tastes good, too.
The reason we haven’t posted much about what we’re doing lately – and might not for a while yet – is because we’re not really doing anything. Eating, sleeping, working, and homework consumes all day every day. The only sunshine we expose ourselves to is on the two-minute walk to work.
That’s no way to live, and I think I’m about to revolt. It could be a lot worse – we’re not really complaining – but we’re just big fans of direct human interaction.
Anyway, the forcast calls for a bunch of “Chinese culture posts” rather than “fun stuff we’re doing posts,” but it should only be like this for a time. We’re loving the reading, it’s just the not-doing-anything-else part that’s starting to wear on us.
We entered Chou-chou in KittenWar! – where people upload pictures of their kittens into a “cuteness war.” It pits kitten against kitten by displaying a pair of photos, and random web surfers click who they think is the cuter of the two. I can’t believe I’m writing this after all that “we’re so busy” stuff. Anyway, as of this post Chou-chou is 7-4-4.