snuff is a thing of the past

Last week Talia and I took a trip down to Hainan. An Island in the South of China. In time I'll tell about the Island, the trip, our glamorous hostel, steaming hot pomelos, zorbs, the little emporer that couldn't, matching hawaiian outfits, sandcastle architects, and our new friends the Cowboy and his Lithuanian Compadre...but first I want to talk about Snuff.

We stayed at a hostel, right by the beach. The place was awesome. Writing on the walls guests from all around the world, 40s for 5kuai a pingr, and an owner named Peter who sells sunscreen for far too much money, but he really knows how to look after his guests.

China is the only place in the world that I would let a really dirty strange man, who doesn't speak a lick of English rub an unidentifiable green goop from a plastic water bottle on my feet and ankles while I lay on the beach.
After my first few nights in Sanya, my feet and ankles were eaten by mosquitos, the bites were so bad that I felt like sunburning them the next day to distract the itching. I didn't really care that much because I was having fun, but this man walking by me on the beach noticed my feet and came to inspect the bites. (just for the record it looked like I had some crazy disease). In any case, he tried to explain to me something in Chinese, Talia and I got parts of it, he looked pretty concerned. Then he pulled out a bottle of green goop, dusted the sand from my leg and rubbed a little bit of it on some of the bites. Then he continued explaining stuff in Chinese. I got him to write what he was saying and doing in my little black sketchbook...(something that I have been doing whenever I have a question about anything but am unable understand the answer because of the language, I ask the person to write it down in the book. Then later I ask Fiona, my Chinese tutor what it means...I LOVE SURPISES) In this case, I was hoping that it didn't say that the green goop is poison, or I had some exotic disease and 48hours to live. At that point, my one foot started feeling better, and the kind man put some more goop on the other foot. I thanked him and he was on his way. My feet started feeling much better and I was left with some mysterious message from a stranger on the beach. I still haven't found out what the message really says. I have a feeling that the man that wrote it probably didn't go to school. But for the time being, my feet feel better and my only hypochondria moment was two nights ago I had a crazy migrane for about 3 hours...I was convinced I had malaria or some crazy tropical disease contracted in Hainan and that we were never going to be able to explain that to a doctor, never mind to the cab driver who was going to take me to a hospital, and then have to air lift me to an English speaking country. Luckily Talia made me some spaghetti with tomato sauce and then I felt better.

Speaking of hallucinations, lets get back to Snuff. On one of the nights in Sanya, Peter started to unveil his bag of tricks, that I'm sure he uses to entertain young, naive and adventurous western travelers. At this point Talia and I were hanging out with our two new friends the Wandering Cowboy and his Lithuanian Compadre. Peter broke out a bottle of snuff, then another, and then another...each time more exotic. We let the boys test it out. But whoever thought Snuff was a thing of the past...go to Sanya.

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