Monday, October 15, 2007

China Day 24: The Chinese People

Today I haven't heard much from the team in China – they seem to be doing just fine – I am going to have to educate them on the importance of daily updates to Mom! It is just not right that I can't be here and there at the same time... ;-)

Jeff and Kallie did arrive just fine, but Kallie left her purse in the car that picked them up from the airport. They didn't realize it until they were in the room unpacking and by then the car was looonnng gone. I was talking to Jeff on the phone and he said he needed to go so that he could go track down the purse. Luckily Jeff had Kallie's passport and all the cash with him – but they did have a lot of credit cards, ID and their camera in the purse.

Well – Jeff quickly found out that there is a language barrier – he had a hard time acting out what 'purse' meant to the nurse... I guess the doctor that was working (this was on Sunday) told them that they would contact the company the next day. I am going – what?! The next day?! Why not call immediately and get the guy to bring it back now...? I got online later that night to see what they had found out Monday morning – but the hospital still seemed to not be to worried about it. Jeff wanted to know where the administration building was so that he could track down someone who spoke English to talk to about it.

He finally was able to contact Wendy (the really good translator) and they tracked down the driver and were told that “you handbag will be delivered this afternoon”. Well – it was and EVERYTHING was ok! They had all of their credit cards and camera returned! I think that it is quite a credit to the Chinese people – I am not sure that this would have happened in one of our large American cities! Anyway, I was impressed by their honesty. I have found the Chinese people to be very warm with a desire to be helpful. I say this about all that I have met with the exception of the street vendors... ;-)

I also wanted to tell you about the culture of bicycling in China. My good friend (and old roomie) Wendy reminded me of this Chinese anomaly, and mentioned how that was such an eye opener for her when she was in China – then Nathan sent me some pictures of this phenomena so that I could share with you! (Thanks Nate for the pictures!)

Biking in Beijing -

This is a picture of a typical biking scene as you drive down the road. There are bikers everywhere! They weave in and out of the traffic – it is amazing the way they drive there! The cars come within inches of other cars and bikers, but I haven't ever seen an accident (nor any dented up cars). They must have a REALLY good driving school!

Now there's a bike with a cart!

This guy looks like he is out to earn his day's living... I am just not sure how much he is going to get for those boxes! Perhaps some one can educate me – he might be using these boxes for a personal use, perhaps flooring for his home... I am not sure. Some of the conditions over there are pretty poverty stricken.... but look at his face... hard working and determined... amazing people!

This shot looks a little scary – I hope one lane of traffic stops for the other!

More to come on Dan tomorrow --

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