Traveling in China: Dinner on Our Own

Glenda and I went out to dinner last night at the little restaurant across the street while the rest of the group ate fish and chips or hamburgers and fries at the hotel. This was one of those nights that the tour designates as "on Your Own."

Our guide recommended the restaurant because  it " had pictures so we would have some idea of what we were eating. But it didn't seem to help. Our first attempt was for beer. Luckily the man at the table next to ours knew some English and ordered for us. Then came the meal. I decided on something that arrived at the table on a small hibachi. Glenda just pointed to the picture on the opposite page.

Our meals came but no rice. We cupped our hands and tried "rice." This time she understood. We shared our dishes, putting the rice into our bowl and topping it with one of the dishes. Then finished that dish, we added rice and topped it with the next dish. We were pleased one of the dishes was spicy but nothing that we could not handle. Finished, we wandered around the corner to the bakery where we each purchased a moon cake to eat at the upcoming lecture on calligraphy.

 

Filed under: China, Travel

Tags: dinner, food

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    Carolyn Boiarsky

    " I am an American," but not "Chicago born" like Augie March. Only Chicago aged. I'd like to think that if Henry Louis Gates were to investigate my geneology, he would discover in my past three women who traveled around the globe, chronicling their adventures. Sarah Kemble Knight traveled 112 miles by carriage from Boston to New York in 1704, a journey most women did not embark on alone (and men did so only with some trepidation). In fact, women were only just beginning to exercise their independence in the 1920's when Emily Kimbrough took off with her friend, Cornelia Otis Skinner, to explore Europe. But it is Auntie Mame, transforming herself from a New Yorker to the wife of an Austrian Baron and climbing the Matterhorn, whose mantra I have adopted. "LIFE IS A BANQUET...LIVE!" I began travelling in the 1960's when I traveled around western Europe between graduating from the Univiersity of Pennsylvania and my first job as a statehouse correspondent for UPI (United Press International) in Charleston, West Virginia, which was about as foreign a place as Europe was to someone who grew up in the environs of Philadelphia. Since then, I've also travelled to Kaunas, Lithuania, to teach at Vytautus Magnus University and to Sheffield, England, to present a paper at an engineering conference. I've been to the Alps and seen Auntie Mame's Matterhorn while climbing, by a series of cable cars rather than by foot, toward the peak of Mont Blanc. For the past 10 years my husband and I have been traveling to unique places: a sheep farm during lambing season in England's Lake Country, a hotel on one of the Barromeo Islands in the middle of Lake Maggiore in Northern Italy, and a cottage in Dun Quin on the Dingle Peninsula which the Irish claim is the last parish before Boston. Between excursions, I'm a professor in the Department of English at Purdue University Calumet in Hammond, Indiana,. My husband passed away recently and, Auntie Mame-style, I am in the process of transforming myself. Last year I joined a tour to Central Asia. This year I'm going to China to work with the pandas. A new adventure. Another banquet.

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