Yuan Hui is the first friend that I've made in Chengdu. She is 23, works in finance, and has never traveled outside of China; in fact, with the exception of her hometown (Nanchong) and Chongqing, she has been to only one or two places in China. “I do not have any money,” she said; but, even so, she refused to allow me to pay for our meal.
I met Hui while trying unsuccessfully to find Tianfu Square, on foot; she recommended I take the bus, and not only did she escort me to the bus stop, she took the bus with me to Tianfu Square, where we then found a place to eat dinner.
Over dinner we talked about Chinese sports: badminton, tennis, ping pong, and diving (my favorite). She said that the Chinese diving team made her very proud. After dinner, while walking to the bus stop, I was able to use my limited Chinese to make her laugh, when I rejected the solicitation of an unlicensed scooter taxi.
[I don't need.]
|Yuan Hui in front of China’s largest Mao statute, in Tianfu Square; Chengdu, Sichuan province.|
| It always makes me smile to receive emails from my Chinese friends. So friendly.|
| Ordering dinner at Kang Chef’s Beef Noodle, in Chengdu. |
| Yuan Hui introduced me to Ceylon milk tea with pearls; I love it. |
| Nearly all Chinese whom I’ve met prefer QQ to email. |
|This is what was on the other side of the paper; I think Yuan Hui might be a math genius or something.|