An American in Chengdu

Making friends | September 11, 2009

Today for lunch I went to the student cafeteria at the other side of campus. The food there isn’t great, but there are vegetarian choices and I can just point to what I want. I also thought it might be a chance to meet people, since foreigners are a bit of a novelty on this campus.

A girl at the next table talked to me a little, though conversation was made difficult by the noise level and by the fact that her English is poor and my Chinese is even worse. But before she left she suggested we eat dinner together, and wrote down her phone number for me. We met up at 6:00.

Junyu’s English is bad enough that I felt I could practice some Chinese without trying her patience too much, and we conversed a little awkwardly in both languages. She turned out to be a freshman in the school of overseas education with aspirations of studying in England in a few years. She’s from Sichuan, as are all the other Chinese students I’ve met so far. The Chinese like to stay close to home.

She mentioned that she was dreading showering that evening because she has to use a group shower, which she finds awkward. A little later, as we left, she told me she has four roommates. I wondered whether all the students have to live in such pornographic conditions, or only freshmen. And can one pay to live in a better dorm? I hope to infiltrate a dorm and find out the answers to these and other pressing questions. Don’t expect pictures of the group showers, though.


1 Comment »

  1. Thanks for offering to take pics of the girls’ group shower!

    Comment by SirMarglar — September 17, 2009 @ 1:03 pm

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    About me

    I've come to Sichuan in search of adventure, fluency in Chinese, and awesome vegetarian food. I have to concede that the baby pandas are very cute.
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