Zàijiàn Beijing

The cacophony of car horns

Curled tongues at the end of every word

Clearing the throat of phlegm … followed by the inevitable sound of spitting … on the street … next to your foot

Where an AQI over 200 means take shallow breaths

The inviting sound of rain signaling a clear tomorrow

Toddlers peeing by the sidewalk

Grown men peeing by the sidewalk

Men baring their bellies to cool off

Old men walking their birds in the park

Animated card games

Grandmothers dancing in the park

Graceful tai chi movements

Inventing your very own form of sign language with exaggerated gestures

The joy of being understood

The frustration at understanding only every five words spoken

The din of motor bikes

Dui, dui, dui, dui, dui, dui

Sidewalk barber shops, a pile of hair neatly swept to the side

Music blaring from the mobile boot-legged CD vendor

Selling anything from the trunk of a car

Where a cloth on the floor and a few knick-knacks means you’re an entrepreneur

Avoiding going blind from looking into the green laser lights for sale at busy intersections

Fearing for your life from pedi-cabs passing by

The constant ringing of bike bells

Coming home with bruised arms from everyone who bumped into you

Carrying a small towel everywhere you go to wipe the grime from your face

Forcing your way onto the subway train

Forcing your way out of the subway train

The rancid smell of bodies huddled together on the train

Blaring unending car horns … that everyone ignores

Being accosted at the market … Lady, lady, you want a bag?

Bargaining as if your life depended on it

Wondering if it’s silk or polyester

Never feeling you got the better part of the bargain

Long distance phone calls that never connect

Carrying tissue with you at all times

Squatting and praying you don’t slip

Avoiding looking at the trash can in the ladies’ room

The joy of ice cubes

Ten dollar foot massages

Sweating in the back seat of un-air conditioned taxis

Not knowing whether its best to open the window to let air in or close the window to keep pollution out

Undistinguishable odors emanating from food vendor stalls

Contemplating ordering the jelly-like mass on the menu but deciding against it

The best soup dumplings ever

Craving sautéed bitter greens and bamboo shoots

Funky nail art

A mountain of shaved ice under condensed milk and slices of mango

~~ * ~~

Zàijiàn doesn’t mean goodbye … it means see you again

在见 北京

giving thanks

ever since my first tentative taps on the keyboard to create this blog, i was never sure where it would take me. i’m not trying to sell anything, i just enjoy knitting and writing and thought it might be fun to share with others. i’ve “met” knitters, crocheters, weavers and other artists from all over the world. i derive pleasure from seeing the wonderful items made by so many hands. i have much for which to give thanks.

it was therefore a treat to learn that agujas was nominated for a couple of awards. so, first of all, muchas gracias to sue at fibercrush and to hannah at not your average crochet for the reader appreciation award.

here are the award questions and answers:

  1. your favourite colour? purple!
  2. your favourite animal? scottish terrier
  3. your favourite non-alcoholic drink? orange juice – so refreshing
  4. facebook or twitter? both but leaning toward twitter
  5. your favourite pattern? chunky cables
  6. getting or giving presents? giving, definitely giving
  7. your favourite number? 2, something about the symmetry
  8. your favourite day of the week? friday, nice to wrap up the week
  9. your favourite flower? burning heart tulips
  10. what is your passion? travel

now the best part, nominating blogs i appreciate:

  1. yalotar – an actively engaged citizen of finland, and a crocheter
  2. grim dreaming – musings from the night shift (now day shift) in dublin
  3. the solipsist – steve will probably not give a hoot about blog awards, but i’m nominating his blog anyway. witty viewpoints and great pics from an expat in san miguel de allende
  4. coco j. ginger says – clever prose with a dash of poetry
  5. while out riding – a photo-story from the back of a bike
  6. doodlemum – a drawing is worth a thousand words
  7. victor melendez – a graphic artist
  8. view from casita colibrí – another expat, this time in oaxaca

p.s. double thanks to hannah at not your average crochet for the dual nomination for the beautiful blogger award.