Shengdan Kuaile to all, and to all wan an!

25 12 2009

“Merry Christmas” in Chinese is “Shengdan Kuaile.” (Pronounced SHUNG DAN KWEYE LUH”) So it’s now Christmas day here in Nanjing. We had a few people over for Christmas Eve, which was a nice, relatively low-key event. Our apartment is tiny, so it was the closest we’ve gotten to reproduce the feel of a Chinese bar, minus the smoke. So with everyone here, we went down to the local “big restaurant” with private rooms and had your standard Chinese dinner – Gong bao ji ding (Kung Pao Chicken), Yu xiang qiezi (Eggplant), Di san xian (vegetable dish – means “three treasures of the earth”), Nanjing Salted Duck, and a few others that I don’t know the name of. The dinner was fine, nothing too spectacular. After that, everyone came up, and we have some bad Chinese wine and chatted a bit. Everyone left a little early, which was surprising, but it was OK, since Missy and I could take the opportunity to just have a quiet night at home, which doesn’t happen very often.

Christmas in China is a little strange. I think that Missy has probably talked to most of you about it, but they view Christmas as more of a quaint Western festival, so they do lots of things that annoy the foreign teachers, like having dinners you must attend on Christmas Day, or requiring you to have parties with your classes on Christmas Day, both of which we avoided, thankfully. Anyway, people here don’t really celebrate, so though you see taped-on Santa faces everywhere, it’s not really like Christmas in the traditional sense that you would expect in the U.S. or Europe or Latin America. They (meaning the Chinese) also seem to have a keen ability for finding a terrible Christmas song and playing just it on repeat all day at a store, which is always nice. At any rate, we’re both off today, which is the important thing.

Thanks to everyone who hasn’t been thanked yet for sending gifts. Everything was great, though some of the clothes are now GIGANTIC on us. Luckily, we can have that fixed. Missy and I also exchanged gifts, the highlights of which include an old Chinese globe she got me and an interesting wall hanging I bought her (which you’ll probably see in picture form later).

Anyway, that’s it for today. We’re going to sleep in a bit longer and then go eat Chinese food again. Merry Christmas!




3 responses

25 12 2009

Glad to hear it was a good day! Thinking of you two lots. Have a wonderful, if weird, holiday season!

25 12 2009

And thanks – I love my new icon. I call it granny smith apple candleholder with bird feet. It’s a little embarrassing though, since I got you the same exact thing for Christmas. Ah well, it’s the thought that counts.

27 12 2009

It’s amazing what others see as the essence of a holiday, isn’t it? Glad you enjoyed and had Friday off!

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