Shop Til You Drop

Check out my pretty new dishes. Aren't they very girly :)

Check out my pretty new dishes. Aren’t they very girly ūüôā

Jason has  become  my shopping buddy, He  is like extremely patiently with my disorganized way  of  shopping. I am basically all over the place. The mission today was  to get a toaster oven.  I miss  baking things. I never  even though of the joys  of  an oven until I did not have one. Also I am having a dinner party tomorrow so I wanted to make  garlic  bread. A toaster oven is a very useful for  an expat .

My toaster oven

My toaster oven

Jason and I took the¬† white van over¬† to Auchan(my¬† favorite¬† store) While we were¬† looking at the toaster oven, 2¬† employees rushed to help us. Then they took the¬† toaster oven and¬† opened the box and¬† walked away.¬† Jason told me they were checking to see if it works. This is¬† when I had¬† my WTF moment. In the USA they¬† don’t plug up and¬† check to see if the¬† product¬† works. In the US you buy¬† the¬† product and if it does¬† not¬† work¬† you return the¬† product or¬† use¬† your¬† warranty. Jason said that they do the¬† same thing in the Philippines.

This is one Chinese Way that¬† I really appreciate. So¬† guess what? My original product¬† did¬† not work when they tried¬† turning it on. It was not heating at all. The oven was not warm. Three other¬† employees rushed¬† over¬† to assist. So there¬† were¬† five women trying to get this¬† oven to work.¬† This was¬† the last one of that model. One¬† of the¬† women rushed over to get the demo model. They¬† plugged it in and this one heated up quickly. I decided to take the demo model, I didn’t like the¬† other¬† brand that they had. Now I just¬† have to figure out Celsius. This one¬† has pictures¬† and¬† tell you¬† what ¬† temperature¬† and how long to cook certain foods. It is idiot proof.

As we were  walking away  we  noticed that the employee plugged the  original one back in and it started  smoking! It was defective. Thank goodness, the Chinese  test products  before you buy them! That is one  practice  I think we  should  adopt back home  in the  States. On a side note kudos to the  customer  service  at this  store. It is  top notch. That is  one  of the  main reasons  that I like Auchan over Walmart.  I have  to say perhaps there is  a unseen code that Walmart employees  adhere  to that states that they  should ignore  customers, be  rude  and text. The Walmart  employees  at the one I went  to are just like back home!

Making a list and  check it twice

Making a list and check it twice

Next I had¬† to buy¬† some things¬† for the dinner party. This¬† time I came¬† armed¬† with a list, I didn’t want to drive Jason too insane. I am not a list person, but it did¬† keep me¬† a bit¬† more centered.¬† I went off the¬† list a bit, I bought a¬† hamper. Oh and¬† I¬† forgot to add in¬† plates, bowls¬† and cups. I bought salad¬† tongs¬† as¬† well. Oh¬† and towels to¬† wrap the¬† dishes in. Plus I needed¬† more towels. I forgot a¬† big¬† bowl to¬† serve the¬† salad in, so I am going to look in the¬† local store¬† on¬† campus¬† for that. I also bought¬† some¬† wine.

Between my purchases¬† and Jason’s purchases we realized there¬† was¬† no way that we were going to fit all of this¬† stuff in the white van. We also would¬† have¬† to hoof it back to our¬† apartments. It is¬† about a 15-20 minute walk from the¬† back to where we¬† live on campus, so we decided¬† to take¬† a taxi. We hailed one. There was a taxi driver passing us, ¬†he¬† had a another¬† person in the car he¬† stopped¬† and backed up into oncoming traffic. Jason , who speaks some Chinese¬† told him where we¬† were¬† going. We stepped in the cab. This¬† was the cabbie from hell. If¬† he¬† was born in the¬† US he¬† would have become a Nascar driver! OMG he drove fast. I have¬† been in other¬† taxis¬† before but never have a ridden in one¬† where¬† he drives like a manic. He made a U-turn¬† so quickly that you could hear his tires squealing! Oh and ¬†he broke out in spontaneous song and there was no ¬†music.

Speed Racer  nearly  missed the  back entrance to the college. He was  going  close to  90 miles an hour. Jason screamed for  him  to stop that. He made the  most abrupt  stop and I was nearly thrown off  my seat!  He  drove  in the  gate, there  were  no  guard  so he  did  not have to leave his taxi license with the  guard(Oh  something  bizarro, the  dude  had  two different taxi license with photos. Once we  got in the cab he switched his license. That was all kinds  of  sketchy) He  drove  around the  campus  doing at least 60 miles per hour! Students  were  walking and  had to jump out of the  way! What a crazy  cabbie! When he  stopped in front of the apartment the tires screeched again. I was  glad to be out of that  cab!

Peter Pan Syndrome Solved….Sorta

Anyone that knows¬† me well knows that I am¬† not the¬† most¬† mature person for my age. I have been accused¬† of being very naive and¬† immature. I think I was just coddled too much, so there are¬† many occasions where , I just¬† don’t¬† act like an adult couple that with being¬† lazy, ditzy and¬† being a procrastinator you have Amber all rolled up in confusing ball of chaos. I think this¬† is¬† why I feel¬† more comfortable¬† with younger men, we are in the¬† same emotional field.

If Yan Can Cook , so can Amber. It might be edible though.

If Yan Can Cook , so can Amber. It might be edible though.

I would rather eat cookies  for  breakfast then cook myself  breakfast. I know  very bad, it use takes less effort. Or I use when I was motivated  enough was to go to the  supermarket and  buy Nutrigrain bars. Mostly though, I was a regular  at Dunkin Donuts. They even had my order  ready  for me  when they  saw  my  car pull up. Two pumpkin donuts and a large pumpkin coffee semi sweet, When  that was not in season it was a large vanilla  coffee light and sweet with a raisin bran muffin. I would  scarf this in the car.

Iron Chef Amber. I wonder if I will end  up losing a finger?

Iron Chef Amber. I wonder if I will end up losing a finger?

Lunch, I never  really ate, I had only a 30 minute  lunch so i had  snacks in my desk. By the  time I got home  from my miserable  job , I was starved  and  exhausted. I would devour  chips then call for  take out. I was living like a 20 something straight out of college. The mystical thing called a stove never turned on. When it did, the  smoke detector went off  because I burnt dinner!!!! I was so bad that I use to have  to order  food  for the  dog  so I could reach the delivery minimum.

I vowed that I would¬† cook for¬† myself, sometimes. I haven’t been able to do this because I was living in a hotel for¬† my first month stay in China. Also the food in the cafeteria was very good and¬† cheap. I am miraculously losing weight. I eat baozi, hard boiled egg, or rice porridge¬† for breakfast, then¬† veggies and¬† some meat or tofu for lunch and dinner. I am snaking on fruit. sometimes .I buy¬† steamed break. I also have been drinking lots of green tea.

Still though, grown up prepare food  for themselves in a kitchen. I finally decided that I was going to cook. I dragged Jason, my neighbor to town with me. He was bored so he  had  nothing else better to do.  My mission was to get pots and  pans. My goal was to cook dinner tonight. I so went ADHDas I always  do when I shop. I never  make a list, I have  a general idea about what I need. I was ready to buy sneakers because they were men shoes that looked girl, I ended up buying a shoe rack. I am going to make folks  take off their  shoes when they  visit. Then I decided I needed  lotion, deep conditioner, face moisturizer.

Pretty purple shoe rack. I only have two pairs of  shoes!!!

Pretty purple shoe rack. I only have two pairs of shoes!!!

Then I was looking at  dog leashes  and dog food.  Jason was like, um the pots  and  pans  are this  way. He  was cracking up because I wanted  everything purple or  a pretty color. He  said  shopping with me  was hilarious  because I was all over the place. I did   find the pots  and pans. I also brought a  wok(come on  now I am in China) a cutting board, oh and  a knife set and  a steamer. Maybe  I can make  my own steamed buns and  steamed veggies. I  got cutesy chopsticks too. Oh and  a wooden  spatula.

Jason even helped  me  carry my  stuff. All he   brought was milk and  cheese. Oh and  it was  raining too. However, though I brought all this  nice expensive  cooking gadgets, Check out my fridge. Barren, um  I have  not gotten groceries. Ummm oopsies!!!!!! I do have  a bag of frozen dumplings in the freezer.  Oh and  cucumber. I forgot olive oil to cook with! So I did  do one adult thing today but  my flakiness reigns supreme.

My barren fridge

My barren fridge

Welcome to my Crypt!!!! Muhahahaha!


My apartment building in Nanchang at the university.

My ¬†first month in ¬†China, i spent living in a hotel on ¬†campus. I felt extremely displaced. The reason why ¬†I¬†was living in a hotel was because, they were renovation ¬†my apartment. ¬†The hotel had ¬†it’s ¬†perks but I really longed for ¬†a place to call my own. On March 21st I ¬†got the ¬†call that I could come to The Foreign Affairs ¬†Office ¬†and pick up my keys! I was so excited. I walked over with Ron’s wife. I first, being a Christian asked Mr. Grumpy, if ¬†he ¬†would like me to pick up his ¬†keys ¬†fro him but he yelled at me. I am trying to be ¬†a good Christian ¬†but that man( he teaches English too) is really grating on my nerves!¬† He has ¬†bad ¬†knees ¬†so I was trying to be ¬†kind.

I found  out that I live  on the third floor in room 301. i am not in the same building as Ron the Canadian and  his wife. They live  next door to Joel and Lulu. Joel and  Lulu are my friends and I really like them we  got  to church together.  I was bummed that I do not live next  door to them. i do live next door to Jason, the Filipino. He is  also  an English teacher at my school and  he  has  been at the school for  five years. He is  extremely nice and offered to help me when I need heavy things lifted.

The¬†apartment¬†wasn’t clean and I had ¬†no bed linen, so I opted ¬†to take the ¬†white van into town and ¬†pick up bed linen at Auchan (chain department store in China).I then ¬†dropped off the bed linen at my new place and went ¬†to the hotel i had ¬†class on Friday in the ¬†afternoon so I moved my¬†luggage¬†over to the ¬†new apartment. It took about three trips and ¬†I hurt ¬†my ankle in the process.

People  from the university came later on Friday to bring in my computer, luckily I bought a LAN wire with me. I discovered that I had no internet! Oh no my life was ruined. what  would, i do? I had  whole weekend without the internet, it was torture. i spent time cleaning.

Friday, night, I made the bed  and collapsed on it. i was exhausted. I also got my first cold while living in China  and  it was very  chilly. Oh and when I took a shower the  next morning, my apartment flooded. I was wondering why the water  was not  flowing out of the drain. I had to take the strainer out!!!!. when i got out of the shower there was water everywhere!. In the  dining room and  kitchen. I only had one  towel. I  bought  cleaning supplies  and  several mops. Mr. Grumpy will be  living downstairs from me, I hope the water  did not leak into his apartment.

Besides¬† the ¬†mishaps, I have to say that I am so glad to be home ūüôā The only thing I need¬†now¬†is ¬†a dog and then my life would be awesome