A Travellerspoint blog

March 2005

Where is that Damn Cat!.....nice with Lemon Sauce!

Hey Hey and a Big Freaky G'Day toya

This evening was a rather strange and yummy experience of the feline kind!

I spent the day in Baise with my friend Mandy (I won't use Chinese names). We walked and talked and walked and talked and talked and walked and walked and talked. Around midday we headed to a little village to visit Evie. I had chatted to Evie on the phone a few times and we got along well as we both loved cats. So it was nice to finally meet her. When we arrived her parents were home preparing dinner and Evie was still at school teaching. We sat for a tea and chat with her parents...well Mandy did, I just listened and made up my own story as to what they were talking about.

An hour or so later Evie arrived home and we said our happy hello's etc. After getting changed, Evie was walking around the house saying the same word over and over. I had no idea what she was saying so I asked Mandy. Oh, she was calling her cat.

Oh cool, the cat, now I could meet the cat too. She went from room to room with no luck. Her father said something and the mood in the room changed.

Evie kinda just stood there like she didn't know what to say. In the local dialect you would say, Bu urgh, kinda like butter with without the t's and with a British accent. It means open mouthed...in wonder, shock, tired, dazed etc etc..you know, mouth half open, tongue half hanging out. I asked Mandy what was happening and she looked at the pot that had been boiling infront of us on the table for over an hour. Evie's Mum came over and quickly began talking to Mandy about something.

My mind ticked over and over and I had my own version of what was in the pot!

Finally dinner arrived and we all began eating. Evie was still not talking to her father. I went from dish to dish sampling a little of each until I came across a meat dish that tasted a bit different. HHHhhhhmmmm! I think I know what this is! The parents looked at me and Mandy and Evie were trying not to laugh.

Then I found an ear...Argh! MEOW I said.

Everyone burst out laughing. So I dipped it into the lemon sauce and down it went. It seems her parents hated the cat as it sat around and Meow'd all day. Her father, I was told, had continually threatened to make the cat disappear and when he got news that they were to receive their first visit from a foreigner, he had found his excuse.

Evie was none too happy, but together we found the funny side and with our chop sticks, we sat side by side and dipped Felix into a lemon grass sauce and gave him a wothy burial!

(this paragraph is being written on the 10th September 2005 as I load this diary entry onto my Travelogue).

Don't get all RSPCAish on me. I'm in China not Australia or England. How do you think the people from India would feel about us in Australia, especially if they are visiting and pass a truck full the 'sacred cow' on their way to the slaughter yards. We do and eat strange things in Australia and the Western World just as those in the East eat and do strange and wonderful things.

Here there are no restrictions, but this is slowly changing. It will take time before Fido the family dog remains 'just the family dog' and doesn't have the nick name 'Lunch or Dinner'. But it is happening. Around me families have pets. Many cute puppies are being carried around and spoilt like little chindren. Many kittens are being walked around town like puppies by children.

It wasn't like this at all five years ago, it wasn't like this AT ALL! Most cats and dogs had the nick names Lunch or Dinner! On my daily walks I stop to pat many spoilt kittens and puppies. They are very well loved and looked after. But China could use a ship load full of flea collars. I'm not saying that what happened above doesn't happen as obviously it does, but I'm sure over a period of time their way of thinking will change as will their menu.

But until then, I'll happily eat my way around China, just as they do.

Beers N Noodles toya..shane _______________________

The soundtrack to this entry was Prince The album was 'The Hits - Disk 2' She's a peach mate! MeoW!

MMMmmm Yummy!!!

MMMmmm Yummy!!!

Posted by eddakath 17:00 Archived in China Comments (0)

English Corners A Hoot

English Corners A Hoot

English Corners A Hoot


English Corners A Hoot (1)

English Corners A Hoot (1)


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English Corners A Hoot (6)

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English Corners A Hoot (7)

English Corners A Hoot (7)

Posted by eddakath 17:00 Archived in China Comments (0)

Womens Day Celebrations

Hey Hey and a Big G'Day to you

Alls well over here Tianyang County.

I'm settling into my new place of living. It's very simple and it's very comfortable. I have everything I need which isn't much...mainly a wok, and a 1 burner stove with gas bottle for the shower water, a bed, a computer and some cane chairs and a table.

Like everywhere in China everything is tiled, cool in summer and cold in winter, but hey, it's easy to clean! Everything is so simple here. Everyone goes to the market each day for vegies and food stuff. Your kitchen has no cupboards just a sanitiser as you wash your dishes in cold water and then put them in there. You don't actually use it, it becomes your cupboard. I have found out why it is all tiles several times whilst helping cook dinner Your floor becomes a mud pit during the process but hey, it's all part of it. You just mop it later.

Chinese houses are really so clean when you think about it!

When I got here my computer was in Chinese so I formatted it with my own copy of XP that I was smart enough to bring with me. I had a great trip here; it took most of the day as I went by bus. From Yangshuo to Guilin, Guilin to Nanning and Nanning to Tianyang. When I left Yangshuo I had several layers of clothes on, by the time I had left Nanning and was on my way here I was shedding the layers. It was like we passed an invisible wall and the humidity set in.

The country changed just as the weather changed. I must say, a large smile was on my face the entire journey. When I arrived in Tianyang I was met by all the officials of the school with a massive bunch of flowers. It was such a happy moment for me. On the way to taking me to my room, we stopped in at the pool.

Tee Hee, oh baby I love the south of China!

It seems that there have not been many foreign people here in the past except the last two female teachers before me one of which was Australian. The town is exactly what I search for when I travel, barely any English spoken and no written English, no street signs, dirt and cobble stone alleys and roads and of course the million stalls selling noodle soup and other assorted stuff all lined up along the streets. I love it!

I think the population is around 30,000, so a tiny village by Chinese standards.

I'm being looked after by two lovely Chinese girls aged 21 and 25. They know English well enough to get by and are very cute! I had my first class last Tuesday and just loved it. It's funny, everyone here has layers of clothing on and I'm walking around in a t-shirt and shorts. I'm constantly being asked...brrrr cold? Sometimes I put a jumper on just to keep them happy and to stop worrying about me but tis not cold at all.

Like most places in Asia when I walk around the kids stop me to look at my arm hairs!

The land around here is kind of like down in the Shishong Banner (correct spelling is Xishuangbanna Region) down near Myanmar and Laos (my fav place from last time), I guess cross it with the Guilin area and you have here. I love it so much here. I wouldn't change it for the world. My two friends come to my house and we cook dinner and we watch DVD's or we go out. I have lunch with the Kinda kid's everyday as my friends are Kinda teachers.

We snack on chicken feet and duck tongue and beak.

So far I've been to 2 weddings, brother's places, sister's places, not real sister's places, parents places, friends places etc. I was told by the other primary teachers that it's like I've been here for years, but I think that may have to do with not needing much help as I've travelled heaps of Asia. so they constantly try to get me to do stuff I've never done.

But I've eaten dog before etc! HA HAR!

My kids are fantastic, around 60 to a class. My grade 3's and 4's are my favs. The 5's and 6's are more of a challenge but I do my best to keep them happy. I love English corner each night. We have soooo much fun. We walk around and teach each other the English and Chinese names for everything. Then I let them pass around my Chinese/English dictionary, we then spend the next hour playing Hide and Seek and Duck Duck Goose.

My friends sang in the Women's Day thingy last night and it was such a beautiful night. We then headed out for beer. Beer beer, oh so much beer. I'm in heaven. Pretty Asian girls drinking beer around me all the time. Life's pretty tough in Tianyang County I must say. Tonight I'm off to a girl's house I met through a friend whilst at the KTV place. She works for an airline and wants to know about Australia. I think they are trying to get a flight course there or something. She is having a Women's Day dinner with her friends tonight so I'm being collected at 6.

More pretty Asian girls drinking beer. Oh, please someone help me!

I spend hours at the town's market place a few times a week. I get fed and free beer and we all laugh and laugh and laugh. One lady breaks into hysterical laughter whenever she looks at me. It's so funny. So I by vegies from her just to make her laugh more. I go off walking on my free time and have several times been offered lunch or dinner with a little out of town family.

My friends keep hearing stories of the foreign boy who was eating here or eating there or eating with that family or over there or riding somewhere way out over there, it's so funny.

I went to Baise last weekend with Yang Yang (Jane) and had the best time. Spent time lying by the pond talking and we walked and visited her friends and ate here and there. Her boyfriend who lives in Malaysia rang me the other night and it looks like I could be off to Malaysia at mid year for a month with Yang Yang.

My bosses are cool, the big gal doesn't speak any English but smiles and stands by me and smiles again all the time. The big guy is always pouring me beer at Karaoke so it seems I must be doing ok. All I need now is a Tianyang wife and life couldn't be more perfect. I wish I had of done this 10 years ago instead of a stupid career in law. How strange life is hey. Luckily I have no belongings in Australia so I guess it really doesn't matter how long I stay.

I just have to hope I can be the teacher they want me to be.

There is one thing that I just can't seem to figure out so far. Like last time, there is hocking and spitting and when you eat the bones and stuff go on the floor or the table by hocking them out of your mouth, but what gets me is, how can a people spit their food on the table and floor in front of you and then cover their mouth with their hand when using a toothpick. I asked Yang Yang and she just laughed and wondered if anyone in China has actually thought of it that way.

Strange behaviour.

No doors on most public toilets so everyone gets to watch you do your business yet they'll still cover their mouth whilst using a bloody toothpick. Strange but makes you love China even more.

Anyhow, I'm outta here, missyuz an incy wincy bit. Beers N Noodles....shane

Womens Day Celebrations

Womens Day Celebrations


Womens Day Celebrations (1)

Womens Day Celebrations (1)


Womens Day Celebrations (2)

Womens Day Celebrations (2)


Womens Day Celebrations (3)

Womens Day Celebrations (3)


Womens Day Celebrations (4)

Womens Day Celebrations (4)

Posted by eddakath 17:00 Archived in China Comments (0)

Teachers Wedding

Hey Hey and a Big G'Day to you

Chinese weddings are very strange indeed!

After school I went to visit Yang Yang and the kinda kids as usual. She was all excited and told me her friend was getting married and had invited me along. How cool I thought. I've only just arrived and I'll experience a Chinese Wedding.

Well, here is my experience.

Everyone arrived at the hotel; we all made our way inside. On the way we'd congratulate the beautiful bride and the handsome groom who were handing out cigarette packets along with sweets etc.

We all spent the next hour eating a most delicious meal. I was waiting for something to begin and suddenly everyone stopped eating and began leaving. I followed Yang Yang's lead and thought to myself, cool now we go to the park and watch the wedding.

I continued following Yang and she led me right back home again. It seems that was it.

In China the couple apply for a marriage licence, sign a bit of paper, give some photos and hand them back. That's the wedding, lock, stock and two smoking barrels! Months and even years can go by before they can afford the wedding feast for family and friends. That's my version of my Chinese Wedding!

Apologies to all whom were as excited as I.

Beers N Noodles to you...shane

  • **** update: this continued for the following two evenings. Of course we attended, they dressed in their wedding attire and continued handing out sweets and cigarettes. So began the routine, everyone came, ate and left!

Teachers Wedding

Teachers Wedding


Teachers Wedding 2

Teachers Wedding 2


Teachers Wedding 3

Teachers Wedding 3


Teachers Wedding 4

Teachers Wedding 4

Posted by eddakath 17:00 Archived in China Comments (0)