I’m joining today with Angie at Many Little Blessings for her Top Ten Tuesday.
I’m not sure if these are the actual top ten reasons why, but I was in an appreciative mood today for our adopted home, and I’ve been thinking of this post for some time.
Here are some reasons we enjoy life in China.
- Milk delivery. My parents can hardly believe that I remember milk delivery in Canada, but I do. We lived in a rural area, and I’m pretty sure milk delivery–like Saturday postal delivery–held out longer there than other places, but I remember the butter and milk being left at the back door. We don’t actually drink milk (with the exception of JavaMan who uses it for steamed milk for his cappuccino). We do make kefir out of it. (Yes, we’re weird and health-nutty that way.) Our milk is delivered to a little box just outside apartment building door and fetching it each morning has officially been added to our chore list.
- China is a fruit-lover’s paradise. And as many varieties of wonderful fruit we’ve had the opportunity to try, it seems like there’s always something new. Today’s in-season treat was Chinese bayberries–gobbled up within minutes of purchase. Yum!
- Markets. I just love buying fresh produce and coming home to cook it up. It seems to inspire me in the kitchen. And it’s not just a food-buying experience. I love the interaction with the people in the market. Over time, we form relationships with the people we purchase from. It’s more than a buying experience, it’s friendship.
- People love children. Everywhere we go, people express delight at the fact that we have three. They shower them with attention and show their obvious affection. People wonder why my Chinese has improved more rapidly than JavaMan’s. The answer is simple. I’m usually the one with the children, and this is an immediate door-opener. People stop me and ask me questions. They don’t do this when JavaMan is on his way to work by himself. People just love children here. It’s heartwarming.
- One yuan bus rides–for adults. Kids are free, although we’re quickly approaching the height where Pumpkin will also owe one yuan. At today’s rates, one yuan is equivalent to 0.157 Canadian/American dollars. Buses go just about everywhere, and one rarely has to wait more than five minutes for one. It might be pretty full when it arrives, however.
- Cherry blossoms in springtime. Need I say more?
- Custom-made items in no time flat. I’ve raved and raved about my custom 100% cotton-fllled duvet. On Monday I (finally) ordered curtains. They’ll be ready Thursday, thank you very much.
- Street food. We’re pretty discriminating when it comes to the food sold on the street. But some of it is amazing. There’s a shwarma-style sandwich (or over rice for the gluten-free folk) that is IN-CRED-IBLE. And what we affectionately call meat-on-a-stick, sold at various locations throughout the city, always lamb, always grilled to perfection by Muslim minority cooks. Are you drooling yet, or is it just me?
- At night, it’s actually dark. I mentioned the lack of curtains, right? Well, until sunrise at 5:00 a.m. (the entire country is on one time zone and we happen to be quite far east), it doesn’t matter. At night, it’s dark. Buildings, streetlights and lighted paths are minimal. People go to bed at 10:00 p.m. and all their lights are off. For a large city, there is very little ambient light.
- Trying new things. Whether it be food, learning the language, making new friends, exploring a new location or learning how to vlog(!), life in China has pushed us outside our comfort zone, and daily teaches us patience and tolerance, love and laughter.