A thought occurred to me this morning: I suck at speaking in one language.
I switch between languages all the time in my head. In fact, mid-sentence, my brain will just decide it no longer wants to stick to one language, and ends up stuffing so many thoughts into my head that I can’t even formulate a sentence anymore. “Let’s start thinking in the language you’re not trying to communicate in, Bobbie!”, it says.
Which means I’m always frantically trying to translate whatever thought I was trying to express, from whatever language my brain suddenly decided to think in, back into the language I was speaking in… and I inevitably jumble my words together and sound ridiculous. Thanks, brain. I don’t even know how I deal with speaking at all. There’s so much I want to say but can’t in just one language. I’ve learned 3 and pick others up really easily, but have never mastered any of them. The result is I end up terrible at all of them. SIGH.
So, as this post is a (long-overdue, sorry) continuation of my China trip back in Jan/Feb, where I was thinking not in English most of the time, I do apologise in advance if I throw some random Chinese words in there. I’ll try to pick the best Google Translation and put it on the side if that happens.
So where were we?
Yummy duck had been eaten – Peking Duck, cooked the proper way (sorry guys, I don’t care how you think your ducks are well done – or medium-rare, depending on how you like your meat… medium-rare, geddit? Ehhem – even if they were cooked by the finest chefs in the UK, you still really need to try some Peking Duck. Then you’ll understand what you were eating was only a fail imitation of what one would do with a steak, and definitely not the proper way to eat duck. But I digress.) and the only suitable activity post-gorging ourselves on food would be to walk off those calories! Goodness knows I’m too fat by Chinese standards already anyway.
We hopped in the car and drove off to a park I absolutely remember playing in during my childhood years. Oh who am I kidding. I barely remember it. But I do remember visiting it the last time I went to Beijing, which was also years ago.
My cousin took this very attractive photo of me once we got out of the car:
And we headed over to the park.
The entire park is built around a large lake in the centre. Walking in, they’d transformed an area of the lake, that had frozen over, into a winter wonderland of sorts with toddlers and their parents tobogganing and sliding down snow-mounds in massive hula-hoops. No photos, although we did debate if we were young or childish enough to go play as well, and decided that with the youngest being 14, the shortest being 23, and the 18-yr-old being simply not interested, we couldn’t reaaally get away with it anymore.
A walk by the lake was a good compromise instead:
There were so many lanterns floating everywhere as well. It was kinda beautiful.
There was even a giant lantern made of hundreds of mini-lanterns!
I may have been a little excited about it.
There were a few more funny photos, but I decided to spare you the pain of having to look at them. You’re welcome.
Let’s keep walking, shall we?
They must have been preparing for the festival as there were rows and rows of stalls set up – and some were still being set up – for the Lantern Festival in a few days’ time (n.b. Lantern Festival/Spring Festival are all other names for Chinese New Year).
Walking a little further on, we reached 一些亭子 (a pavilion) built on the lake.
Look at that lil bro of mine (cousin, but in Chinese we simply call them siblings), actin’ all cool n stuff! Awwhh.
I got in a pic too, hee. Yup, the majority of these photos are taken on my Samsung Galaxy S4 – pretty good, huh? :) I really need to invest in a real camera though…
I love these traditional Chinese buildings… the architecture is really spectacular. Almost the entire pavilion was open to public, so you could go into the rooms and look out of the window to see the view of the frozen lake. Wandering around in it almost made me feel like I was back in Qing Dynasty, China. Closing my eyes, I could almost see myself in princess robes, dipping my feet in the lake on a warm summer’s evening, listening to the birds sing and the gentlest of breezes rustling the leaves on the trees…
And then a security guard came to kick us out as it was getting dark.
I snuck one last photo with the pavilion:
Taken by H, who hasn’t quite mastered the technique of taking photos at flattering angles yet. Ah well, until next time!
Tune in for part 3, where I become a Snow Queen and Ice Princess… (Let it goooooo, let it go~)
Please don’t ask me ’bout the hat.