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and now for some reason I now smell like gasonline

Woah! now that was some day. Started off on the right foot. Woke up, did some work, conquered a new juicer/blender machine, went to a new gym for the first time and from there I went off to buy a bike, ride it to JiaoTong University to register for my Chinese class, and then go home to do work. Simple, fun, easy...you would think. In China...not so much. Everything up until after the gym was great. Then I went to find a bike store, which on a scale of 1-10 of getting lost (10 being ...I could be in Albequerque right now and I wouldn't know it...and 1 being oh...that's where I buy my groceries). At this point I was at about a 5, not so bad for me by China standards. (we will use this scale again later). In any case, with a little bit of trouble, I find the store, find the bike I want...a shiny looking, cheapest one they had, bright yellow bicycle (zixingche). My bike, my basket and my lock cost a meager (200RMB)30$. And I was on my way. After a few petals I realized that I had bought what had to be the crappiest piece of crap bike on the face of the planet. No. Seriously. Two blocks later I was sweating, it was so hard to petal, it felt like I was in a spinning class and shanghai has no hills. On top of that every time I petal with my left foot it makes an annoying clinging sound. I sound like an ice cream truck, clanging away, and I'm drenched in sweat for absolutely no reason. I think for a second about going back, but I'm halfway to my destination and I realize that even if I did go back to the store, there was no way I could explain what was wrong. So I continue on, figuring that it probably is just a really bad bike, and that I'll get used to it and have really strong legs in a few weeks. A few blocks later, I am stopped at a curb and a guy on a bike is trying to tell me something. I have no idea what he is saying but he tells me to pull over into an alley way. Finally I understand that something is wrong with the back wheel. He pulls out a pump and I figure he is going to pump it up. Instead of doing this, he takes the whole tube thing out of the tire, tries to put air in it, spits on it, bubbles come out, and I see that the thing is broken. So he rips it off the bike, and now I am a little freaked out because I am in China and some dude just disassembled my bike. He takes out more tools, unscrews some more pieces and then thankfully pulls a new tire out of a box he was carrying. As a side note, this whole time I am thinking how lucky I am that this guy is helping me and how nice people in China are. About five minutes later I am good to go and am ready to give this guy 20RMB for his help. I got to give him the money and he says he wants 100RMB. I tell him that I don't have more money...(even though I do but I need to it buy my books, plus that is over half what the new bike cost me 20minutes earlier!). After a few minutes, where I felt painfully bad and guilty, because the guy really did help me out, he let me go after giving him 20RMB. I felt really bad, but honestly... Then I finally found the school, registered, left, got 9 on my scale of 1-10 lost on my way home. But found an awesome building that I will definitely take some photos of soon. I am thoroughly exhausted. My piece of crap bike is locked up in the stairwell...I never want to look at it again. Or until tomorrow. And I have yet to figure this out but for some reason I reek of gasoline.

1 comment:

Melanie said...

TEEJ! its chloe!! i just spent like an hour readin all your entries. it looks SO interesting. YOU LUCKY DUCK. i love you ! i miss you ! . come home soon. write. do something !! .. BIG KISSES EVERYWHERE.

 
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