Real Food and Facebook

Well, I must continue my Harry Potter epic, mustn’t I?

Since it’s been a while now, sadly, this will be much shorter than was originally intended. Basically, we were watching it with subtitles (SPOILER ALERT sort of) and then at the point where Ron comes back the subs went off, making the 99% (everyone but Karina, Lorena and I) Chinese-speaking audience very angry. This made them talk loudly and whistle, one woman shouted (in Chinese) “If anyone can understand, please translate!”. The theatre was total chaos, and of course the three of us were pretty pissed at everyone for talking so much since we could understand just fine. The movie kept playing ,despite the angry audience…then some people who worked at the theatre came in and yelled over everything that if people wanted to see the movie with subs from the point where they went off, they could go to the theatre next door and if anyone wanted to stay they could. We of course chose to stay, relishing the thought of the theatre to ourselves at a midnight premiere. When does that ever happen? Never. So pretty cool, right?

No. Because after maybe fifteen minutes the movie stopped completely in the middle of a scene (don’t remember which), the lights came on, and the cleaning crew came in. Thankfully, there was a VERY angry Chinese man who had refused to leave his assigned seat, and he well…he made a point, though he sort of scared everyone in the process. He yelled at one of the women who worked there very loudly, and even pushed her at one point…but they started playing the movie again, at first from the beginning but then (after we protested) from where the subtitles had stopped, which was fine. We then watched the rest of the movie uninterrupted..but still. Pretty crazy Harry Potter experience, but the movie was worth it, it was definitely my favorite of the Harry Potter movies. You should see it if you haven’t yet!

Anyhow, I told you all I dyed my hair on Thursday, right? Honestly can’t remember, look on flickr or facebook if you haven’t already seen. I liked it initially, then didn’t like it, but now I like it again. Sure, I look a little paler, but this is definitely an improvement from my gross fading-brown-from-being-bleached-before and huge roots. I feel prettier. Not all of my hair was covered with the dye because I only bought one box but Karina did great considering how much hair I have! So there’s still a little blond tint to some of it, and I like it. I’m in Nanjing now with my American AFS friend Lisa, and she and the other people we’ve met here all say it looks natural and they were surprised when I said I just dyed my hair. So there! Approval from my peers, as a teenage girl what more can I ask for?

So I flew to Nanjing on Friday night, got there around ten-thirty, and upon arrival my phone wouldn’t stop pretending not to have service. On my flight I sat between a Chinese man and woman, the woman on my left slept the whole time, the man looked like he was in extreme pain for the first half of the flight. Flight attendants kept coming to him and trying to help him, giving him water and a pillow, I asked if he was okay in Chinese and he waved me away so I just listened to my ipod. Then, at a seemingly random time, he took out his iPad and started reading the news, acting completely normal. I don’t know, readers, I don’t know. Sometimes I really just don’t understand China.

Back to my phone not working—it’s still like that right now, no idea what’s wrong with it, all I did was turn it off. So for the week I have no phone, using Lisa’s when I need one, which isn’t often. Saturday night Lisa and I went out to dinner with a bunch of other AFS kids at this nice Western resturaunt, real Western food not weird Chinese imitation stuff. The place is owned by a German guy apparently (I Googled it) and the food was delicious! I got a quesadilla and oh man, it…it was amazing. I didn’t realize how much I miss Mexican food. Soooo amazing, I’m glad I got it. Originally I was going to get a pizza because they were cheap but this guy Kale from Montana told me that the pizzas were just so-so and that the quesadillas were amazing, so we both got them and…wow. I really cannot stress how fantastic it was. All the Americans in Nanjing are getting together for Thanksgiving, and we were originally going to eat at the Sheraton but that was going to be expensive…and Lisa saw a poster outside of the Western restaurant we went to, so now that will be where we eat our Thanksgiving meal! It promises to be delicious and really a fun event. I’m looking forward to it a lot.

Let’s see, what have I done in Nanjing…today we went to the former Presidential Palace, it was really beautiful, I think we’re going back Thursday? for part of the day, because the place was just so damn huge. It was seriously gorgeous, though, and the architecture/overall feel made me remember why I had wanted to come here so bad in the first place. I felt like  I was walking through a painting or a dream… and since I know you’re going to get all excited and ask where the pictures are, I still meiyou (don’t have) an adaptor, so I don’t have my real camera. Have to try to remember to charge my battery using Lisa’s…or I could risk plugging it into a normal plug. Hm. I’m considering that now, since it worked for my computer. I’ll get back to you on how that goes. But yeah, I took some pictures on my iTouch but the quality isn’t very good. Lisa took some on her camera as well but I’m not sure when/if I’ll be getting those. My hair also looks pretty crazy right now because I forgot to bring a brush, and combs simply don’t work when my hair gets tangled, as you can probably imagine if you’ve ever seen my hair, which I hope you have if you’re reading my blog. But hey, if you’re some random person I don’t know reading this, Hi there! Go look at my flickr, maybe this will all be easier to imagine then! Haha.

If I’m friends with you on facebook, you’ve probably noticed my sudden presence and posting frenzy. This is because Lisa has a VPN (Google or Wikipedia it if you don’t know what that is, same with a proxy. Please.) on her computer, so I’ve been taking full advantage of that. I know that’s not exactly great to be doing, but it’s so hard to resist. It’s not that I want to really go on facebook per se, but I like seeing my friends’ faces. There are a lot of people who don’t email me (I’m talking to you, Cal people, cough cough) and so I never know what’s going on in their lives…one of my best friends from last year moved to the Philippines! I had no idea! Anyhow, though, going on facebook today, I had a nice little realization. Last year, a lot of my time on it made me sad because, though I have many friends on facebook, many of them are old friends or simply acquaintances. I would get sad because I wanted to really be friends with them, to be tagged in the same picture, to know more about their lives not because it showed up on my newsfeed but because they told me so themselves. Today, though, I looked at some people who had made me feel like this in particular and…all I felt was indifference. For the ones I used to be close with—there was a fork and we each took separate paths. We’re not ‘best friends’ anymore because, to be blunt, we don’t talk, I don’t know you anymore nor do you know me. I don’t mean this in a cruel way, more of just a matter-of-fact one. We used to be close, now we’re not. Life moves on.

And to those who I wanted to be friends with—well, you don’t become friends with someone, like, real friends with someone, by just wanting to be. I mean sure, you can see someone and think they’re cool and decide you want to try to get to know them, but that won’t always work. Sometimes personalities are just awkward with eachother, you’ll never get past the pretend-we’re-good-friends, the small talk, the kind wall posts when really you don’t know eachother from anyone else. There are people that I’ve wanted to be friends with and haven’t…and that’s okay. I don’t have to be friends with every single person I know, sometimes just knowing who they are is okay.

Sorry if that seems really stupid or obvious, but, I just feel much more free. There are people I don’t like, too, but I don’t have to go and tell them all the reasons I don’t like them. I can just hate them peacefully, that’s fine too.


3 thoughts on “Real Food and Facebook”

  1. Hi Miranda,
    My name’s Alison and I live in Australia. I was an AFS exchange student a long time ago in Italy, and I studied in China back in the 80’s as part of my undergraduate degree in East Asian Studies. These days, I’m a writer and I’m currently working on a novel for young adults about an exchange student in China. I’ve been following your blog since October and have really enjoyed it. Is there any chance you’d be willing to give me some insights about your trip? (Once you get back home and life settles down again, of course!)
    What I’m after are little bits of info about the program, such as orientation, etc. (I’ve got characters and a plot, etc., so it’s facts and insights I’m after.) If you’re not interested or are too busy, perhaps you know of a fellow AFSer or returnee (China ) who might be interested in corresponding with me?
    I hope the end of your trip is fantastic.
    All the best,

    1. Hi Alison,
      I’d love to talk to you about my trip! I’ll email you at the email you commented with, I’m happy you enjoy my blog. It’s really cool to think that I have readers that aren’t from the US!
      You’ll hear from me soon,

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