Team Journal, October 25

Monday, October 25 – Ginny

Thought for the day: “Don’t sweat the small stuff. It’s all small stuff.”

Today began as a holiday for Fred and I. It was like a “No-school day in Worchester due the snow” only I knew this last Friday. Instead of rushing from breakfast room at 7:15, we lingered until 8:15.

Around 10:30am Wang Ping called and invited Fred and I to lunch at her house. She won’t be doing the cooking (she isn’t a good cook or so she says) but another teacher at Hi Tech College will cook, Miao Rong. Wang Ping picks Fred and I up at the hotel and brings us to her apartment on the 6th floor. The apartment is a very large one and belongs to her parents who are in the 70’s and presently renting an apartment in another place on the second floor. There is no heat in the apartment but a pipe is present to be hooked up to a heating system if the community wants heat. Then each apartment owner will have to buy the heating, wait to be attached to the pipe. It can be very cold in Xi’an (-10 Celsius to -3 Celsius) in winter. Wang Ping told us she spends cold days in a bed covered by quilts. I notice a wall air conditioning unit and ask her about it. It does give off some heat but not much.

Miao Rong cooks a delicious 12 vegetable soup with a small noodle added called “cat’s ears” since this is their shape. Miao states that many Chinese youngsters do not eat their vegetables, preferring meat to vegetables. So she cooks this soup for her 5-year-old son and husband often for lunch. Also two additional cold dishes are served, one a pigskin with garlic in vinegar and another darkly colored egg slices quite colorfully arranged. Sweets of all kinds were served and Wang Ping insists that I bring them to the hotel. Fred leaves to meet his Chinese friend. Wang Ping is concerned about Fred so calls his friend and asks her to call her when Fred arrives. Wang Ping gets the cab for Fred too. Miao returns home as her son gets home from school at 5pm. Wang Ping wants me to stay longer and insists on getting the taxi and riding to the hotel with me. She showed me pictures of me and Kitty taken in 2005. I am amazed that she kept them on her computer.

The most outstanding memory I will have of this day is how Wang Ping has really come out of her shell or shyness with me. She is sharp and gives it back to me whenever she can. I love it. She is still nervous at first but then she realizes we are all friends and relaxes. I forgot to mention her husband came in for lunch and all three of them worked in the kitchen making our lunch. I know I have found more Chinese friends in Xian. Global Volunteers has again made a difference in my life.

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