Bon Appetit In China

By Robin, Cultural Embrace Teach in China program

This is just a snapshot of some random moments that actually happen to us on a daily basis.

Jeff and I are at dinner at our favorite restaurant, which translates directly to “Special Restaurant.” We eat there at least 3 times a week. At first glance you wouldn’t even think that this place was a restaurant, it looks more like a glorified storage shed. But this place serves up some of the best fried eggplant, dumplings, stir fried cabbage, etc this side of the Yellow River. So there we were, enjoying our meal of sweet and sour pork and egg and tomato on rice. Well, almost enjoying it. There was one very pesky fly that wouldn’t leave us alone. So Jeff helps himself to the electric fly swatter tennis racket thing that the lady keeps behind her counter where you pay, and brings it back to the table. For the next 5 minutes, Jeff is swinging this thing around the room, or trapping flies underneath his deadly weapon on the tables next to us, all while the rest of China is trying to eat their dinner.

But this one particular fly proved very evasive. It was like watching some predator/prey documentary as Jeff would pause mid mouthful and swing at this fly until finally, with a might swing and a surprising ZAP! he got it. There was much rejoicing, at least on Jeff’s part, as he tried to explain himself to the restaurant owner. We did get the thumbs up from the guy sitting next to us, while the rest of his table laughed it up at the ridiculous Americans.

Just another day in China….At least the zapped fly didn’t land in our dinner…

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