21 11 2009

This is a story from a few weeks ago but I was reminded of it tonight and thought it was worth sharing.

Our local import store, Times Grocery, carries vegetarian refried beans and tortillas. We decided to attempt soft tacos and tracked down non-Mexican hard, white cheese. All we needed was the veggies so we headed to our street’s fruit and veggie stand to pick up some tomatoes (we are still a little leery about lettuce.) There was a mound of red fruit in the front and we picked out two.

Ever seen a persimmon? Me neither. Looks like this-

Ever seen a tomato? Me too! They look like this-

Remarkable similar, wouldn’t you say?

I sliced into the piece of red produce we purchased and noticed that this “tomato” did not have seeds. I sniffed it and realized quickly that it was not a tomato. This was a deliciously sweet fruit of some kind where the meat was similar to the meat on the outsides of a tomato. I brought it up with my teachers and they got me the chinese characters, google got me the word ‘persimmon’. I only knew of it from Greek mythology. It’s the ‘fruit of the gods’. FYI- it does not compliment a soft taco.

bon appetite,


That’s it?

16 11 2009

It’s been a few months now and we’ve officially reached the point where we no longer are in touch with American pop culture. I do my best by reading Perez Hilton almost every day and we both click through to the NYT often enough, but in terms of the little things you pick up from the media- we’re simply out of touch.

Case in point- We’ve begun to notice that our dvd stores have movies we’ve never heard of. It’s hard to tell whether it’s a straight to video release, a Russian or European release or a big Hollywood movie we simply didn’t know existed because it came out after we left. Remember that the knock-off DVDs show up on the street in China very quickly. In fact, we watched This Is It this evening. Jeremiah bought it last week for 10 quai (about $1.50.) We will admit that we fast forwarded though the boring songs. Sheesh, MJ! Enough with loving the environment already. How green is the Staples Center you’re holding rehearsals in? Did you know that Roger Ebert gave it 4 stars? Hm.

love, Missy

BC and the American healthcare system

26 08 2009

Let’s get down to it, shall we? China and birth control. I have two stories.

1st- Two days ago we were walking down the main drag that Jeremiah’s school and housing are on with a fellow female teacher and I noticed an unmarked metal box that was attached the the city wall that lines the sidewalk. It looked remarkably like a tampon machine and I stopped our small convoy to examine it. I noticed a small faded heart, and it suddenly dawned on me that this just might be a condom machine. We inserted 1Y (about 15 cents) and proof was dispensed below. Jeremiah immediately pointed out that all of the people streaming by on their bikes must be thinking how lucky this American dude with two American chicks was to need a condom in the middle of the afternoon on a weekday.

img 1331

2nd- I forgot to bring a script for BC pills and had heard they were easy to come by and, perhaps, even over the counter. We stopped into a small pharmacy and I drew a bad picture of a circular pack of pills. I also drew a stick figure with a belly and a line through it-
this got me offered a pee stick test. An older woman glanced over my shoulder, immediately understood what I needed, and got me a box of pills. No, literally, a box of loose pills that said something like “Birth deterrent pills.” When I didn’t look excited I was offered a traditional and familiar pack of pills that was a Bayer brand with an English name that had a trademark next to it. They rang up the pills and some tummy upset pills and the grand total was … 72Y, which is 10 bucks, people. I looked up the brand online (due dilligence for medicine consumption) and discovered that this particular brand retails for $48 at the discount pharmacy in Canada — which means it’s even more in the US. JEEZ LOUISE!!! All I have to say to that is PUBLIC OPTION. Also, I will be bringing back birth control and reselling it for a profit cheaper than co-pays.

love, Missy

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Jeremiah is eating noodles for breakfast in his underwear shouting at Chinese soccer teams on TV.

25 08 2009

I think that means we’re almost natives.

love, Missy