July 13, 2005

Shopping in Guangzhou

This morning we went shopping in the pearl and jade markets. Once we got there, Eric and I realized that neither of us had much money with us . . . not good planning on our part! But, the owners at both the jade and pearl stores allowed us to pick out everything we wanted, leave a small deposit and promise to return later to pick the things up. The owner of the jade store even allowed us to take all the things with us before we paid. (That would never happened in the United States!) Just in case you're thinking, "Wow. Kristi and Eric have mastered Cantonese and are now negotiating in jewelry stores," rest assured, we're not! None of this would have happened without our guide, XiXi. The photo to the left is of Eric, with Michal, drinking bubble tea.

We spent most of the rest of the day in our hotel room while the girls napped and then played. They're really starting to warm up and we're seeing lots of grins and giggles.

I even got a kiss from Kenna today for the first time. They both think Daddy is very funny and giggle hysterically at almost anything he does for them.

The girls both babble a lot and they both say, "hee, hee, hee, ha, ha, ha." I asked our guide what it meant and she said, "It means hee, hee, ha, ha." I guess some things just don't require a translation! They both also like to sing so I bought them a Cantonese children's CD.

Today Michal decided the stroller is ok and they both took a bath tonight without any crying. They're picking up new things really fast (or maybe we're just seeing new things for the first time!) They both can clap and like playing Patty Cake. They both toddle well and like to kick the ball with Daddy. Stacking cups are by far the biggest hit though and they each carry them with them everywhere they go. Below they're both playing with bubbles.

Tonight we joined the Lashins and XiXi for dinner at a traditional Szechuan hot pot restaurant. It was really a neat experience! You sit at a large table with a huge pot of boiling soup-like concoction that you drop various meats and vegetables into. To choose what you're going to put into the pot, you go over to a curving channel of water, that's called Grandma's Bridge, and pick up the items you want as they float by on a little wooden boat.

The concoction is made as spicy as you want it. XiXi ordered one half of it without spice and the other half mild. The "mild" side was knock-your-socks-off hot. I can't imagine what hot would taste like!

The ever-adventurous Eric ate duck's feet, frog legs and various other interesting things!

The photos below shows one thing we didn't have -- snake skin!!

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