Friday, June 03, 2005

Since You Asked...

HongBo Square
Originally uploaded by billmcgonigle.
I got a few emails in regards to that last post. To answer your questions:

1. That last picture was taken in a hole in the wall karaoke joint. Sometime in March. Santa does come to China, apparently for 5 months (the decorations didnt come down till April) but he nods his head to Beijing, never to Rome or any other Western religious center. Holidays, like religion, are state-controlled here.

2. As far as the weight loss goes, I think it is a combination of eating nothing but fresh foods and not too much meat or carbs. Everything I eat usually comes straight from the fields that day, and a lot of dishes are vegetable-intensive. But it isnt odd that I'll go a few days eating nothing but green beans, eggplant, and rice. On top of that, I've pretty much cut all sugar out of my diet (aside from coffee) and when I do go out for food, all the portions are smaller here. Supersize at McDonald's and it is the size of a small back in the US. Plus I do walk a lot, at least on my days off, as I like being on the ground exploring. Also, it takes a lot of energy to keep up with some of my students.

3. I have a fan on Flickr who has been adding some funny comments to my pictures. His name is "Uterus Chewer," I have no idea who he is, but I enjoy his work.

This picture is of HongBo Square, the "center" of Harbin. Below the monument you'll find two levels of sparwling tunnels converted to house heaps of cheap clothing. I've been buying more clothes lately, as the weather is getting hot, so I've been found here more than once trying on shirts and pants. Oddly, they dont have dressing rooms, so I have the chance to show off my very much not-Chinese bod. However, some stores won't let me try on clothes, as they are afraid I'll rip right through them, Hulk-style. Sounds like a Saxa-Center episode.


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