Our Adventure to the Local Church and Bird & Flower Market

Message of the Day:

“Each of us are angels with only one wing, and we can only fly by embracing one another.” – Luciano de Crescenzo

Team Journal Entry:

The Holy Trinity Church in Kunming

Today we decided to go to church as much for the cultural as the religious experience. So off we went by bus, which we are getting rather good at. One yuan/person (13 cents.) We hadn’t a clue what to expect but wanted to check it out for Christmas Eve (we have to work all day Christmas.) It is called Trinity International Christian Church. It wasn’t far (three bus stops from our hotel) and when we arrived were immediately identified as “foreigners” (not hard) and escorted to the second floor balcony where we were supplied with an English/Chinese hymnal and ear phones for simultaneous translation. We couldn’t see a thing on the first floor, but it didn’t matter because in front of us was a screen with a video of the downstairs as well as English subtitles of the prayers, scripture, sermon, and other parts of the service. We were entirely involved.

We then walked back up the street to the “Bird and Flower Market” which has neither but is a large open-air market with multiple vendors. On the way we passed a Starbucks and said “what the heck, let’s try it.” We had terrific café mochas AND a Western toilet (a rarity.) We met and talked with two Chinese women who, it turned out, were coming from the same church. They were very friendly and we had to explain to them the difference between “Catholic” and “Christian.” They did not understand at all that Catholics are Christian, just a different variety.

The old Kunming town

The old Kunming town

They led us to the market where we spent a great couple of hours “shopping.” Actually, the ladies bought some rather nice things, but had to haggle before they could purchase them. We headed back to the hotel thinking about a late lunch and passed a McDonalds and decided on another cultural experience: What does a Big Mac taste like in Kunming?! Jack’s grilled chicken sandwich was subpar and not at all like home; Errett’s Big Mac was just fine; Cokes and fries were good.

The final event of the afternoon was a walk to Walmart seeking to purchase a wrist watch for Jack, as his had died. No such luck finding watches in the store, but we did manage to purchase a bottle of Malbec from Argentina and a 4-pack of beer (total price 112 yuan or about $16.) We had a delightful conversation with a Chinese gentleman at the wine checkout, who kindly purchased a bag for us for carrying our purchases.


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