Favorite Quotes

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  • "I'm so busy.... I don't know if I found a rope... or lost my donkey! - Unknown"
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Monday, March 23, 2009

My Parents are in China - Part III

We are staying on the 18th floor in our very nice hotel. I have a wonderful view of the city and I love to sit in my chair by the windows and watch the happenings below. Only a few blocks from this area you can find people scouring for cardboard to built their houses. Over here there are large tarps called red, white and blues (yes they are red, white and blue). They can buy these very cheap and they use them for tents. You can also buy a large bag made of this same stuff for about a dollar and people use these everywhere to carry their things.

Directly across from our window we watch a family. Part of their house opens up to the roof. There is an old man in a wheelchair and his wife who looks after him. When the weather is warm she will bring him outside to the edge of the brick retaining wall and he will sit for a long time watching the people below him. Sometimes at this same house a young boy about ten comes out with a jump rope and entertains him with that.

The children here have practically no grass at all to play on. Most of the play areas are on top of the buildings that they live in. Sometimes you will even see a swing set on these roofs. Chinese still typically obey the one child rule. The poor families travel on bicycles. The dad will be peddling the bike, mom will ride on back and the child will sit on a basket on the front of the bike. At least they don't have to worry about them being strapped into a child safety seat with a seat belt. The bicycles are relics that you would find in a salvage yard at home. They also walk everywhere. The streets are always full of people.

There is no such thing as a single family dwelling in China. All of the buildings have several floors and many many people living in them. The normal family home might have a washer but no dryers. The washers are often outside because it doesn't get cold enough here in the winter to freeze the pipes. They hang out their clothing to dry on long poles hung out the window. It amazes me that they never lose anything off these poles. You will see bedspreads, sheets, rugs, and underwear hanging all over the city. The women here will beat their clothes with a stick to loosen the dust and dirt. There are many who still hand wash all of their clothing with just a bucket and soap.

David will travel to the factory tomorrow to teach the people there how to better use the machinery they have. Hopefully I will get out and take some pictures. Until later.....Brenda

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