As I write this, Fabien and I have been in our apartment for one whole day. I have already made two trips to Ikea and two trips to the corner grocery store. Being that we have no car, I can only buy what I can carry. My plan was to buy a cart, but Fabien laughed at me and said “Like one that little old ladies use.” Well, after the day I’ve had I don’t give a squat toilet what he thinks.
On Tuesday, it was my goal to get kitchen supplies at Ikea. I knew this would be a difficult task because that stuff is heavy, but I had it all worked out. I’d take the Metro to the store and hail a taxi home. Little did I know that at 6:00 it’s impossible to get a taxi downtown unless you are a black belt in karate. I did manage to get one to stop but some man jumped in the car, looked at me, looked at the four bags of stuff I was struggling with and said “Sorry”. It was at this moment I learned the city has no mercy for a white girl stupid enough to buy all this stuff and try to bring it home during rush hour. But this also were I taught this cab stealing, heartless man a couple four letter English words accompanied by nice jester with my middle finger.
My options were to 1) cry (which what I really wanted to do), 2) continue to try for a taxi or 3)haul my stuff to the Metro. Growing more angry, upset and irritated about the situation, I mentally prepared myself with patience and I chose option 3. When I got on the train, per usual, everyone ran to get a seat. I gave one lady who nearly pushed me over, such a dirty look that she intelligently opted to give me her seat. Like she had a choice. Then upon switching trains, someone else graciously let me go in front of them so I could get on the train first. This slightly lifted my spirits and proved to me that there are still nice people in the world.
Finally, I made it to my stop. Phew. Only a few more blocks. I had to stop in between and take a break. It was at this break that I was rescued and made my first friend.
A young Chinese girl came up behind me and grabbed two of my bags. I pointed to where I was going and thanked her several times. She started by telling me her English is not good and that she lived in the same set of buildings. I think and feel that there are no coincidences in life and that everyone comes into your life for some reason, whether it be big or small. Her English name is Kitty, which is proof to me that we are suppose to be friends because I love kitty cats. She’s 12 and goes to the school across the street from our apartment complex. While we walked, Kitty quizzed me on where I was from, how old I was and many other English questions she knew. Then she very graciously helped me bring the bags into my apartment and asked if I would help her study for her Oral English test next week. Of course, that is the very least I could do. It wasn’t the first time (or the last) a kitty would cheer me up.
Also, there are a few more photos in the Photo Gallery of our apartment and of Yia Xiu Park, which is the city’s largest downtown park.